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How Apple's privacy stance could give Google an AI edge

Matt Kapko | June 24, 2015
Today, there's a tradeoff between user privacy and the effectiveness of artificial intelligence (AI) apps such as Siri and Google Now. Apple's strong privacy stance may drum up kudos from consumers but also give Google a technological advantage in AI.

Apple's stance on user privacy will likely place limitations on its AI systems, according to Gray. "The counterbalance is user loyalty, which may be better won and kept with its user privacy policy."

Most people are more than willing to hand over private information for access to the best technology, Gray says. However, if Apple suddenly decided to send "eerily relevant offers from third parties" via Siri, users might start to react differently and choose other technologies.

Today, consumers typically use services such as Siri or Google Now with reckless abandon or not at all. Ultimately, they must decide if it's worth giving up personal information for access to specific services. "The unfortunate fact, though, is that users are not even aware of all the data points about them that are being used in various AI systems," Gray says, and as a result, it's difficult, even impossible, for users to effectively manage all of the data they share with Apple and others.

 

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