Google says no, Duplex AI won't take over human call centers

"We aren't testing Duplex with any enterprise clients", a Google spokesperson told Gizmodo.

Google emphasized that it is "taking a slow and measured approach" with Duplex - likely due to the initial backlash - and reiterated the three limited domains that the company has so far announced. Duplex can call them for you so you don't have to negotiate or be put on hold.

The Information report, coupled with a flurry of media coveragewhen Google let reporters test the technology, shows Google's confidence in the new technology as a potential offering to surpass its cloud competitors selling AI tools.

However, the same powerful technology has a flip side for some, as it now appears capable to take away the jobs of telemarketing professionals and call-center operators. As we shared last week, Duplex is created to operate in very specific use cases, and now we're focused on testing with restaurant reservations, hair salon booking, and holiday hours with a limited set of trusted testers.

The idea for use in a call center setting or with that insurance company would be a version of what we've already seen Google doing with Duplex - namely, fielding simple calls and requests and passing things off to a human if things get more complicated.

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While Google's statement indicates that it is more concerned with personal voice assistant applications right now, it does not rule out pursuing enterprise customers in the future.

Watch out call center employees, competition is on the way! But Google - with all of its cloud offerings - is hedging on the advantage provided by its AI smarts.

Duplex would handle simple calls for the insurance company, and if the customer started asking complex questions the bot can't handle a human would step in, according to the report.

We've been seeing the natural-language abilities of the Google Assistant continuously evolve over the years, slowly getting better at listening to us and responding. Just last week, Google better detailed Duplex's disclosure mechanism and the calling experience that businesses will hear. It wasn't immediately clear during those first demo calls that people knew it was a robot they were talking to on the other end of the line.

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