Google Duplex is Starting to Call Restaurants to Make Reservations for You

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Google Duplex is a service that uses voice recognition and speech synthesis technologies to interact with local businesses on your behalf. The first time Google’s Sundar Pichai demoed it, it freaked people out. Here’s a quick look at what people saw:

It’s freaky to listen to a computer interact with a hair salon employee when it seems they have no idea that the entity on the other end is not human.

Now Calling (in Some Locations)

Now The Verge reports that Google Duplex is live in a number of cities, presumably including the previously announced test cities of Atlanta, New York, Phoenix, and the San Francisco Bay Area. I checked and it’s not yet available in Seattle, where I live.

From what The Verge reports, it sounds like a smooth and convenient experience — at least for the end user. The Google Assistant asks where you would like dining reservations, confirms the number in your party, date, time, and the telephone number to leave with the restaurant in case that is required. It makes the call, speaks to an employee at the restaurant and then gets back to you with a reservation confirmation.

4 comments

  1. It would seem that it would take me just as much time to tell Google what and where I am wanting a reservation as it would to just call the place myself! (Kind of like how much quicker it is to just call another person, than to engage in a series of text messages back and forth!) Guess my age is showing!

  2. Right….so I guess what’s next is our reservations and appointments – as both client and service provider – are handled by a Google Duplex-like service? Not having to talk to strangers is sounding even better….

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