Google Duplex Comes to the Bay Area in November

 In News

In July, the GGRA posted an article addressing concerns with the upcoming Google Assistant feature which uses Google Duplex technology to help users book an appointment or check business hours. You can watch the promo here.

Starting in November, Google will be piloting it with businesses and users in the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as New York, Atlanta, and Phoenix.

Google believes this feature will help businesses book more appointments without having to update their systems or train their staff, with research showing that 60% of small businesses who rely on customer bookings do not have an online booking system set up.  Google promises no learning curve and no extra steps needed to get set up: businesses can keep operating as they always have.

A few other things you should know:

  • The Assistant will continue to work closely with booking partners such as OpenTable or Reserve with Google integrations and will default to booking through that partner. When a business does not work with one of Google’s online booking partners, the Assistant will call the business using this new feature.

  • Users can always cancel their appointment through the Google Assistant and will receive reminders before bookings — which aims to reduce no shows.

  • Google Duplex will let businesses know when it is an automated system calling, and when the call is being recorded.

  • Businesses can opt-out during the conversation or in their Google My Business account for any reason. Google has also put systems in place to protect against spam and abuse, including limits on the number and type of requests that a user can make.

We would love to hear your feedback in the coming months as you begin to experience this new technology.

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