According to the Google support page, Google Duplex will now be available in the UK, Australia, and Canada. Moreover, VentureBeat & TheVerge Reports has discovered a new addition of phone numbers on the support page that Google has started to use when calling via Duplex from a distinct country. Google also elucidated that it’s not a full rollout of the service and it is using Duplex mainly to contact businesses in these new countries so that business hours can be updated for Google Maps and Search.
Even the CEO Sundar Pichai has highlighted this use of Google Duplex for business last month, as he mentioned in his blog that in the coming days, businesses will be able to easily mark themselves as ‘temporarily closed’ just using Google My Business. Moreover, the core purpose of using this artificial intelligence (AI) technology Duplex is to make it possible to reach businesses to confirm their updated business hours and reflect them accurately when people look at Search and Maps. However, it isn’t clear yet whether the consumer version of the service will be made available at a subsequent time in those countries or not.
How Does Duplex Work?
Back in 2018, Duplex was introduced as an early beta in the United States through Google Assistant after an ostentatious debut at Google I/O developer conference. There remain many concerns about using Duplex without small businesses’ express agreement and without apt disclosure that the automatic call was being made through a digital voice assistant or a human being. Other than that, Duplex is quite easy to use, as it goes like this – a person only needs to activate Google Assistant and ask the assistant to reserve a seat. This will provide him a list of restaurants to choose from and call the chosen restaurant afterward. The machine will ask the basic questions like day, time & date, and then the seat will be reserved. Besides, Google’s help webpage has also clarified ways to notify if a call is authentic due to the earlier concerns.
Since then, Google has been trying to address those concerns by adding disclosures at the beginning of calls and giving businesses the option to opt-out of being recording and speak with a human – albeit, the success has been limited. Duplex now has human listeners to annotate phone calls and enhance Duplex’s primary machine learning algorithms. Google has also enhanced the service in waves – from starting on just Pixel phones to iOS devices and then other additional Android devices.
The service’s first global expansion was New Zealand however, Google didn’t promptly respond to the request for remarks related to the Duplex enlargement.