Google wants to be in your home. It wants to sell you cameras, alarm systems and voice assistants to make your life – and possibly your targeted advertising business – easier. But there is a problem. People do not necessarily trust big technology companies or their camera-equipped smart displays.
And while Google may not have had a scandal at the Cambridge Analytica level, some incidents with its Nest division may have resulted in an incident to pause buyers: a series of digital intrusions in which nest cameras bring strangers fake nuclear bombing and spying on babies over the Internet (not to exaggerate), and the revelation that the Nest Secure alarm system had a secret microphone that shoppers never knew about
Today, when Google announced it was selling a device Not too different from the Facebook portal, whose review all wondered if you really wanted to invite a Facebook camera to your home, even Google . decided to take privacy for privacy protection in public.
As we noted in our interview with Google Nest's leader, Richi Chandra, Google has established a set of purely English privacy obligations. And although Google did not really release it during today's Google I / O keynote, you can now read it on the web.
Here is the high-level overview:
We explain our sensors and how they work. The technical specifications for our connected home devices list all audio, video, and environmental and activity sensors, whether they are enabled or not. The types of data that collect these sensors and how they are used in various functions can be found in our special help page.
We will explain how your video materials, audio recordings, and home-based sensor measurements are used to provide helpful features and services and our commitment to how we keep this information separate from advertising and ad personalization.
We explain how you can control and manage your data, such as: You can always review and delete audio and video files stored in your Google Account.
The full document, however, becomes much more specific. And remarkably, some of the promises are not the typical right-angle legalese you might expect. Some are completely unique. Some of them are against the grain, such as the fact that Nest will not turn off the camera's capture light.
"Your home is a special place. Here you can decide who you invite. Here you can share family recipes and take baby's first steps. You want to trust the things that you bring to your home. And we're committed to building that trust, "says Google.
I have a real, real question for you, especially if you read through it all. Does that reassure you? Are you more willing or interested in placing a Google camera in your home?
Personally, I have two heads. Part of me is impressed with the simple English and Google's willingness to sacrifice the publicity gap by adding a name to the Nest Division. (It's now Google Nest.) I already have cameras in my house that I do not necessarily trust or that do not work as well as I would like, and maybe I'm in the market for new ones.
But, in part, I'm worried that this is just a thoughtful marketing campaign, a way to sweep past concerns, and that Google can change its mindset and policies at any time.
You can read Google Nest's full privacy statement here]