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Google Duplex will identify itself when Assistant places phone calls for you

During the I/O ’18 keynote, Google showed off a new service called ‘Duplex’ that could call different businesses and schedule appointments, all while sounding very human-like. Since Duplex never announced that it was a bot and actually tricked others into believing it was human, the internet quickly began to argue the morality of this Google service.

In an effort to ease some of those worries about ethics and morality, Google says that it will have Duplex identify itself. We knew and discussed this during the most recent episode of the Alphabet Scoop podcast, and it has now been confirmed by CNET.

A Google spokesperson gave the following statement:

We understand and value the discussion around Google Duplex — as we’ve said from the beginning, transparency in the technology is important. We are designing this feature with disclosure built-in, and we’ll make sure the system is appropriately identified. What we showed at I/O was an early technology demo, and we look forward to incorporating feedback as we develop this into a product.

At this point, we still do not know how Google plans to have Duplex identify itself. When it spoke more like a human, people on the other side of the line were more likely to interact with it. If it’s announcing at the beginning of the call that it’s a bot, would businesses be more likely just to hang up on it? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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Avatar for Justin Duino Justin Duino

I’m a writer for 9to5Google with a background in IT and Android development. Follow me on Twitter to read my ramblings about tech and email me at Tips are always welcome.