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Apple, Google To Stop Listening

Apple and Google have agreed to stop listening to conversations on their voice assistants, following a global backlash to their operations.

This came after a German privacy watchdog ordered Google to cease manual reviews of audio snippets generated by Google Assistant. Apple also said it would suspend a program that allowed its staff to listen to conversations people had with its Siri voice assistant.

Amazon does the same thing with its assistant Alexa. All three companies say it’s to improve speech recognition, a process they call grading.

The Hamburg data protection authority told Google it could be in breach of the EU’s stringent data rules.

Apple said it is suspending Siri listening while it conducts a thorough review and hinted that in future Siri users will be able to opt out of the grading program.

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