Samsung Gear S3 and Gear Sport gain Bixby support and some Galaxy Watch Active 2 features
It’s always nice to start the day with a new update on your old gadget. That’s exactly what Samsung Gear S3 and Gear Sport users are waking up to today (myself included). The update finally replaces the ancient S Voice voice assistant with Bixby and adds a few features from the Galaxy Watch Active 2.
S Voice was Samsung’s original voice assistant, but it was quite different than Bixby. S Voice was more task-driven and less conversational. That being said, Bixby can do everything S Voice could do, so users aren’t losing out on any functionality. Bixby offers a much cleaner a feature-rich interface. You can enable the wake-up command and access Bixby by saying “Hi, Bixby” when the display is on.
If you’re not excited about Bixby (understandable), the more exciting additions are Watch Active 2 features. Apps running in the background,such as an activity tracker, are shown as an icon on the watch face. This allows you to quickly jump back into the app. Other updates include a vertical list view for the app drawer, new emoticons for more skin tones, sleep detection has been improved, the Always-on Display is easier to read, and customizing the Quick Toggles is easier as well.
The update for the Gear S3 series is firmware version R76*XXU2FTD4, while the Gear Sport update is firmware version R600XXU1DTD3. Users in the US and South Korea should have the update today and we expect it in more countries soon. Bixby may not be super exciting to everyone, but the other features are nice. We love to see Samsung continue to update old watches.