Among the various thrilling highlights of I/O, 2018 was Google Assistant and its ability to place phone calls for making appointments on behalf of users for things like movie ticket booking or salon appointments. This basically means a robot calling a real person, which is possible due to the Google Duplex AI technology used in the Assistant app. While demonstrating the amazing skill of the new AI technology, CEO Sundar Pichai revealed that these calls will be recorded for to review later on how things went.
The concern that aroused after this revelation was that there was no information of whether the person on the other end will be alerted about the recording. A couple of days ago, the company provided a Google Duplex demo to its employees at weekly TGIF meeting, showcasing that Assistant actually informs recipients about the recording. Google reiterates that “transparency in the technology is important” and so they’re making sure that Assistant is “appropriately identified.”
After identifying itself to the recipient, Google Assistant will alert them that the call is being recorded. However, this will happen in case of some specific states where the other party’s consent is necessary for call recording, which is currently the rule existing in 11 US states.
There has been much doubt whether these demos at the conference or the company’s blog are fake or real. In order to dig out that Assistant actually made calls to real humans, Twitter users successfully found out one of the restaurants that Google Duplex called in the demo. The restaurant confirmed that they, indeed, got a call from Google. However, reports state that these recording demos were edited for the sake of identity protection of the businesses in question.
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The unveiling of Google Duplex witnessed some mixed response of emotions, ranging from excitement about an unusual human-like mimicry by a robot to concerns and worries on the business-client relationship. Adding a third-party layer between you and businesses is that you won’t feel bad for any number of cancellation of orders because you’re don’t have to face the service provider by yourself. The ever-advancing AI technologies are certainly fascinating but at the same time, they also suggest a future where robots are in command.
Google Assistant’s revamped version holds more. Google announced that 6 new Assistant voices have made their way to the app in major smartphone brands. For more news on I/O, 2018 and its key highlights, stay tuned!
More at NextGeekers: 10 Cool Things Google Assistant Can Do to Make Your Life Easier