Google says its Duplex voice calling AI will make itself "appropriately identified"

Google says its Duplex voice calling AI will make itself

This brings the total number of voices available for the Assistant up from two to eight (four male and four female), but unlike numerous new products shown off at Google I/O, the voices are already live.

Since the announcement, the tech world has been divided over the technology with many raising concerns over ethics and privacy.

It has to be added here that at the current level of development of this technology, Duplex can only handle simple tasks like making reservations and appointments.

Responding to the controversy, Google emphasized that transparency will be an important part of the feature. We are designing this feature with disclosure built-in, and we'll make sure the system is appropriately identified.

The demonstrations at Google I/O, an annual event for creators of Google-compatible products, showed how big technology companies are positioning themselves for a lucrative artificial intelligence revolution while grappling with heightened scrutiny about their societal influence. This was done by means of a phone call made by Google assistant, posing as a person trying to book a haircut appointment.

And unlike the voices of current AI assistants which give off their robot origins, Duplex sounded natural. The new voices have also been synthesized from WaveNet.

Google says its Duplex voice calling AI will make itself

"Just provide the date and time, and your Assistant will call the business to co-ordinate for you".

Google pitched the enhanced assistant as a potential boon to busy people and small businesses which lack websites customers can use to make appointments.

It can be assumed from Google's statement yesterday that whenever Google plans to make the Assistant public, we can expect some kind of verbal confirmation which would establish that you are talking to an AI assistant. The company said it still needs to test how people respond to it.

"These machines could call on behalf of political parties and make ever more convincing recommendations for voting", Firth-Butterfield reasoned. If a business uses an online booking service, the Assistant will book through that. Even though the calls will sound very natural, the Assistant will be clear about the intent of the call so businesses understand the context.

However, the demo shown was nearly too good, with the Assistant inserting "umms" and "errs" with such ease that the recipient of the calls had no idea they were talking to an automated service.

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