This was Amazon Week on the internet but that didn’t stop a few technology gadget writers from spotting the obvious. Russel Brandom on trading privacy for convenience.
Voice assistants (particularly hardware-agnostic ones like Alexa) offer customers a basic deal: accept the privacy cost of putting a microphone in your home, and you can have this array of voice-activated skills, all powered by a near-invisible network of cloud servers. This deal is familiar to anyone who’s spent any time with Facebook or Google products. Alexa isn’t something you buy with money. It’s almost always bundled, for free, with products that have other more benign purposes, like speakers and screens. That may make the trade-offs more subtle than with a Facebook login or Gmail account, but the underlying transaction is the same: data for convenience
Free software and services in exchange for no privacy and personal information culled for profit.