Samsung is launching its new SmartTV, but while some people are worried about its privacy-invading capabilities, it’s more “Siri than Big Brother.”
— CNNMoney (@CNNMoney) February 10, 2015
Concern over Big Brother being able to watch through the TV’s came when the South Korean-owned Samsung released their privacy statement for their latest product.
— Marek Plichta (@Plichta) February 7, 2015
“Please be aware that if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party through your use of Voice Recognition,” is just one of the parts that had people up in arms, as seen on Time.
According to Yahoo News, there was quite a bit of “anxiety that romantic murmurings or domestic rows could be picked up by the televisions.”
The TV is meant to be able to be voice controlled, much like Apple’s Siri or Google Now, and it is not unlike “any other speech-to-text service,” according to CNN.
After releasing the privacy statement and receiving backlash and accusations of being Big Brother, the company acknowledged that the wording “led to confusion” and stated that it would be changing its privacy statement to “to better explains what actually occurs.”
Samsung further went on to disprove the Big Brother theory by explaining that voice recognition occurs both through the TV and the controller, but that “it is waiting for you to say a set of predetermined commands.”
Samsung then stated that “that kind of voice data isn’t stored anywhere, and it’s not transmitted over the Internet.”
If you should choose to activate the voice assistant through the remote control, you have to push the button first, it won’t happen automatically. It is these commands that are sent over the Internet. Why would just these commands need to be transmitted Big Brother style over the Internet?
“A company called Nuance (NUAN), maker of Dragon speech-to-text software, converts that voice data to text and sends it back to the TV so it can run a search,” explains CNN.
Don’t let this put you off from buying from Samsung. Customers won’t have to buy this Big Brother device and can “opt-out of the voice command feature if they choose to.”
And what’s more is that Samsung is actually protecting your privacy with their voice software in order “to make sure hackers or snoopers don’t listen into the stuff you bark at your TV.” Would Big Brother really do that?
So it appears highly unlikely that the South Korean company, Samsung, is trying to act like Big Brother and record what goes on in our living rooms.
[Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia]