The dedicated Bixby key or Side button on the Samsung Galaxy phone is a novel way to summon the digital assistant. So, when you long-press the Bixby or Power button, Bixby shows up. But if you use Google Assistant as your digital assistant, you can change the button to summon that. While Samsung doesn’t allow you to remap Bixby to Google Assistant directly, there are workarounds to make the side button bring up Google Assistant.
Bixby Key vs. Side Button Battle
Earlier, Samsung Galaxy smartphones would ship with a Power button that would work as a dedicated Bixby key to trigger the digital voice assistant. However, not many caught on to the Bixby’s prowess. With Galaxy S20 series, Samsung merged the Bixby key into the Power button—the Side button. Here’s the split of Galaxy phones that refer to the dedicated Bixby key and the ones that came with a Side button:
- Bixby key: Samsung Galaxy S8, S9, S10, Note 8, and Note 9.
- Side button: Samsung Galaxy S20, S21, S22, S23, and S24 series.
All Samsung Galaxy S10 (or an earlier model) owners can find a dedicated Bixby key on the phone’s left side, separate from the Power button. A short-press activates Bixby Home, while a long press activates the Bixby voice assistant.
From Galaxy S20 and later models, the Power button doubles as the multi-function Side button. It can perform various tasks, such as power off the phone, launch Bixby, or open specific apps—depending on how you press it (short, long, or double-press). By default, when you press the Side button, the phone turns the screen on and off, while a long-press activates Bixby.
You can customize its function in Settings > Advanced features > Side button, where the key can be remapped to show the Power-off menu instead of Bixby on a long press.
Additionally, you can configure the double-press function to launch the camera and open apps. However, neither of these options can launch Google Assistant.
How to Remap the Side Button to Google Assistant on Galaxy Phones
While calling out ‘Hey Google‘ works, it’s not always convenient, especially when privacy is a concern. And let’s face it, you might just prefer using the Power button instead of Bixby. The Good Lock modules make it easy to remap the Side Key (or Power button) on your Samsung phone to launch Google Assistant. Follow one of the methods to get started.
Method 1: Using the Routines+ Good Lock Module
On Samsung Galaxy phones, you can use Good Lock to add mini-modules that enhance functionality beyond existing customization options in One UI. Routines+ is a Good Lock module that adds tweaks and triggers otherwise unavailable in the default Routines app.
You can use it to create an ‘If I long-press the Side button, open Google Assistant‘ routine. Here’s how to do it:
1. Install the Google Assistant app from the Play Store and the Good Lock app from the Samsung Store on your phone.
2. Open the Good Lock app and switch to the Life Up tab. Scroll down to install the Routines + module.
3. Head to Settings > Modes and Routines and switch to the Routines tab.
4. Tap the Add new routine (+) button at the top-right corner.
5. Tap on Add what will trigger this routine.
6. Scroll to Routines + and choose Button action (available only if you have the Routines+ Good Lock module installed).
7. Select the Side key and the Press and hold interaction. Tap Done.
8. To add what happens when you long-press the side button, tap Add what this routine will do.
9. Choose Apps.
10. Tap Open an app or do an app action, select Open Assistant, and tap Done.
11. Tap Save and personalize the routine’s name and icon to your preferences. I’d name it ‘Google Assistant’ but you can choose anything.
12. Finally, tap Done to save the routine.
After you remap the Side button to open Google Assistant, you may test it a couple of times. So, whenever you long-press or press and hold the Side button (aka Power key), your phone will open Google Assistant instead of the Bixby app.
Method 2: Using the RegiStar Good Lock Module
RegiStar is a Good Lock module that enables you to configure the Settings app and quickly launch useful features with Back-Tap and Side-Key press and hold actions. Here’s how to make it launch Google Assistant when you press and hold the Power button on your Samsung phone.
1. Open the Good Lock app on your Samsung Galaxy phone.
2. Switch to the Life Up tab and install the RegiStar module.
3. Scroll to the top of the list and tap RegiStar to open it. Allow it the required permissions.
4. Tap on Side-Key press and hold action. Toggle it on.
5. Choose Access your Google Voice Assistant as the action.
Every time you press and hold the Power button or Side key, your Galaxy phone will trigger Google Assistant instead of Bixby. You can also remap the button to other actions, such as toggle the flashlight, open an app, access the Recent apps menu, take screenshots, and more.
Apart from using the Good Lock modules, you can use third-party apps such as sideActions (for Samsung phones with Side Key) and bxActions (for Samsung phones with a dedicated Bixby button) to remap the keys. However, they require ADB permissions and a paid subscription to reconfigure the buttons.
Bonus: Set Google as the Default Voice Assistant
On your Samsung phone, you can swipe inward from one of the bottom corners of the screen to open the digital assistant. If you see Bixby instead of Google, it means you likely have it set as your default. Here’s how to change that and set Google as your default assistant on your Samsung Galaxy phone:
1. Head to Settings > Apps > Choose Default Apps.
2. Tap on the Digital Assistant app > Digital Assistant app.
3. Choose Google. Hit OK to confirm.
4. Ensure you turn on the toggle for Assistant app in Settings > Display > Navigation bar section.
To wake Google Assistant, simply swipe inwards from either the right or left corners to open the Google Assistant app.
Enjoy Google Assistant on Your Samsung Galaxy!
While Samsung doesn’t let you directly remap the Side or Power button to Google Assistant, Good Lock modules and third-party apps offer workarounds to do so. The change is seamless, and you’ll almost forget Bixby ever existed. Still, if Bixby bothers you, consider turning it off and its related features.