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Duplex, Google’s Phone Assistant, arrives on iPhone

Duplex, Google's Phone Assistant, arrives on iPhone

Those who follow the world of technology most certainly were impressed with Google’s astounding technology in the middle of last year : presented as an unfolding of its notorious Wizard, Duplex is a service that effectively does sometimes ” electronic concierge “, and by means of artificial intelligence techniques, contact commercial establishments to check and set schedules.

Duplex debuted first-hand on Google’s own Pixel smartphones and has remained there until now. Today, however, things have changed: the Mountain View giant has updated the feature support page and made it clear that it will start distributing the feature to yet another series of smartphones – not only in the Android world but also for iPhones.

On iOS, users will only need to have the Google Assistant app to take advantage of the new feature; in the case of Android, all devices running version 5.0 “Lollipop” or higher of the system may also have access to the feature. It is worth remembering, however, that so far Duplex is only available in 43 American states (all except Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, Indiana, Texas and Nebraska, under local laws).

For now, Google iOS Assistant has not been updated with the news, but that should happen very soon. If you’re in a coverage area, just talk to the application’s digital assistant you want, say, a two-person reservation at restaurant “X” on such day and time; the Duplex will call the restaurant, make the appointment and will notify you as soon as the process is completed and your reservation is confirmed.

It’s worth noting that companies and businesses may choose not to receive calls from Duplex, and more complex processes (such as canceling a service, for example) are not yet supported by the technology. From the initial presentation here, Google added to the feature an initial message informing the establishment that it is an automated link – precisely because of criticism that they claimed the service was “very real” and could raise ethical issues.

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Hassan Abbas

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