Google Duplex — the magical system that allows an artificial intelligence to place phone calls and make reservations at restaurants — is rolling out now to more areas of the United States. Previously, Duplex was only available in a few major metro areas, like San Francisco, New York and Atlanta.
The feature is exclusive to Google Pixel smartphone owners for the time being, but Google says Duplex support should roll out to other devices “over the next few weeks.” According to the company’s support page for the service, it should arrive on nearly every Android device running Android 5.0 Lollipop or later, as well as most iPhones with Google Assistant installed.
When you use Duplex to do something like make a dinner reservation, Google Assistant makes the call on your behalf. She will communicate verbally with the restaurant staff and negotiate the details for your table. Once the reservation is made, Assistant notifies you on your phone, creates a calendar event, and also sends you a confirmation email.
During the conversation, there is a disclosure that Assistant is making the call, so the restaurant staff knows they are not talking with a human.
If a restaurant uses an online booking system of some sort, Assistant will skip the call and use Reserve with Google instead. Either way, all you have to do is say, “OK Google, book a table for four people at Olives & Oil tomorrow night,” and Assistant will take care of everything.
It’s official. We are living in the future.