Comcast is reportedly developing a smart speaker that would track your bathroom habits

Comcast, reportedly, is working on a device similar in concept to Amazon Echo and Google Home, but focuses more on closely monitoring health and less on consumer-centric features. According to CNBC, it says that the conglomerate is ready to start piloting the product sometime this year before its full launch in 2020. Having one of the most powerful telecommunications empires in the world to track its health and fitness Life has a disturbing dystopian ring. that.

"The device will monitor people's basic health metrics using environmental sensors, and will focus on whether someone makes frequent trips to the bathroom or spends more time than usual in bed," says the CNBC report. "Comcast is also building tools to detect falls, which are common and potentially fatal for older people."

Many products on the market today already have motion sensors, cameras and other hardware that allows what Comcast seems to be visualizing: but not even Amazon or Google have directly tried to keep the personal health of their customers so closely customers. Comcast already offers home security services, and the company's remote X1 voice remote control for its cable platform Xfinity has helped Comcast make advances in the recognition and processing of voice commands.

According to CNBC, Comcast speaker does not offer features like control Smart home devices will not have the ability to find answers to a person's questions on the Internet. But, reportedly, "will have a personality like Alexa" and may make calls to emergency services. Some startups have already had similar ideas for Alexa speakers.

Comcast is said to offer the speaker and a follow-up health service to "people at risk, including seniors and people with disabilities." The company is also in talks with hospitals about the possible use of the device to ensure that patients do not return to the hospital after they have been discharged. " Does your ISP, your doctors and your insurers have a direct and unrestricted view of your daily life? Nothing about this story is very reassuring. Repair the US health care system UU And reducing the cost of medical care seems to be better final goals than keeping people out of emergency rooms.

While Amazon has not yet come this far with its consumer line of intelligent loudspeakers with Alexa capability, the online retail giant has shown great interest in healthcare. Amazon recently announced that Alexa is now able to handle certain patient health information, allowing users to check recipes, monitor blood sugar levels and more.

But Comcast is different. Comcast has long used the unwanted crown of the most hated company in the United States. It is not difficult to see Comcast promoting this person's follow-up of health care during regular cable installations or customer service visits, or insurance companies encourage clients to accept this level of surveillance in exchange for cheaper rates. And if either of you decides that you have gone to the bathroom too often or you have slept more than usual, well, what happens then? Everything is very disturbing, even if Comcast had to comply with HIPAA and other strict patient data laws. There is absolutely a place for tools and technology like this to exist and to help older people live independently longer.

But … Comcast?

Disclosure: Comcast is an investor in Vox Media, The parent company of The Verge .

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