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Amazon is working on a gadget to read your emotional state

Oh great, Alexa won’t be creepy with this, nope…

amazon emotion reader for alexa
Image: Amazon via the US Patent Office

Just when you thought your voice assistants couldn’t get any creepier, Amazon is reportedly working on a wrist-worn, voice-activated gizmo that can read your emotional state.

The report, from Bloomberg, is a glimpse of a future where AI could steer our society, stating, “eventually the technology could be able to advise the wearer how to interact more effectively with others.”

Alexa, how am I feeling today?

Internal documents reviewed by Bloomberg refer to the new gadget a “health and wellness product.” How many more steps before Alexa is ordering Claritin or Ex-Lax for us, before we ask her to? I mean, I get irrational urges to buy that 55-gallon tub of lube but would Alexa actually convert that urge into a sale?

  • It doesn’t take a genius to connect the (Echo) dots to see the eventual use of this tech – making Alexa seem more human.
  • If we misread our own emotional states, can a machine do better?
  • The emotion-reading tech could be used to add context to our requests to Alexa.
  • The gadget is being worked on at Amazon’s skunkworks hardware division, Lab126, who previously created the Echo, the Fire Phone and the Kindle.
  • With Lab126 also reportedly working on a robot for the home, is the future the Jetsons envisioned on the way?
  • Machines/AIs able to read human emotional states (or lack of thereof) is one of the main tropes of the Sci-Fi genre.

Personally, I think someone in Amazon’s upper echelons has been watching Blade Runner just one time too many

What do you think? Would you use a gadget like this or is it too eerie? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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