Google Duplex: AI assistant could soon make your appointments for you

By Renuka
May 23, 2018

Continual and unrelenting advancements in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) have become the norm rather than the exception these days. As we highlighted in our in-depth AI feature, it has become an inherent part of our day-to-day lives, be it through smartphones, home and office security, credit card safety and so forth. And now, Google has apparently pushed the boundaries even further with its recently-unveiled Google Duplex system.

For the uninitiated, Duplex was created as a planned future add-on to the Google Assistant’s already-expansive bag of tricks. Thanks to cutting-edge developments in AI and voice recognition technology, it will allegedly enable your gadget to set up appointments on your behalf, be it a restaurant reservation or a session with your hairdresser.

The tech innovator has positioned Google Duplex to help the roughly 60 percent of small business with no access to automated systems gain entry to its massive user base. However, as soon as the company’s CEO Sundar Pichai played a demo at the Google I/O 2018 keynote address, some questions were raised about the very human voice emulated by the system, most notably whether its life-like voice would create false impressions on those humans it’s set to interact with.

The Google Duplex has raised some concerns in terms of life-like voice

While such ethical questions are part and parcel of any advancements in robotics and AI, one thing is very clear. The Google Duplex system is invariably the next step in the journey to symbiosis between man and machine that our future will no doubt embody.

Video: Jeffrey Grubb