Conspiracy theorists have regularly posed the question of what Google is doing with your voice data from Assistant. Theories range from “always listening” through “spying on you” to “targeting advertising” but Google is answering this question in the best way possible.
Google confirmed in a recent blog post that your voice recordings are not stored by default.
By default, we don’t retain your audio recordings. This has been the case, and will remain unchanged. You can still use the Assistant to help you throughout the day, and have access to helpful features like Voice Match.
You can opt into storage of these recordings if you wish to. This aids in development of the technology that recognises your voice. It also lets go back through your Google account to listen to any interactions you’ve had with Assistant and delete them.
Following recent stories about humans listening to Assistant recordings, Google further states:
We won’t include your audio in the human review process unless you’ve re-confirmed your VAA setting as on.
Personally I found it interesting to note that when the Assistant triggers without the “Hey Google” words, any audio capture is immediately deleted. Further to this, there is a sensitivity option allowing users to adjust how reactive to the trigger words your speakers are.
There are settings in the Home app which can trigger an audible beep when your home speaker is triggered. This can be very useful if you have a few around your home, particularly so if you can’t see the speaker that’s been triggered, and especially useful for visually impaired users.
Clearly Google is working hard to ensure that not only is your data safe, but users are comfortable with what data is being used and how it’s being used.
What makes you comfortable or uncomfortable about using Google Home/Nest Hub products in your home?