Amazon’s Care Hub forces the elderly to use Alexa in exchange for peace of mind
Monitor your mom.
Remember Life Alert? Remember the commercials? Every thought, “You know what would make these better? Amazon.” Well, pal, good news, as Amazon is adding a new feature called Care Hub that takes the idea of Life Alert and expands it into data collection as only Amazon can.
Essentially, Care Hub is marketed as a tool for caregivers and the elderly. It doesn’t have to be between family members, but I would imagine that will be one of the main appeals. It works by both party members setting up the system on their own devices and then the caregiver sending an invite to the person being cared for.
So, how does it function? Well, for the person being monitored cared for, they can easily call the caregiver if they need help, they just need to say “Alexa, call for help.” This will ping the caregiver via push notification, call, and text. Obviously, the person being cared for will need an Alexa-enabled device for this.
On the caregiver end, they can set up alerts to see when the loved one uses an Alexa function for the first time each day, as well as set up alerts if no activity is detected for a certain amount of time. They can also use the Care Hub to look at high-level activity from the other person. This doesn’t show actual Alexa inquiries but will bunch them up into basic request details.
Obviously, there are some benefits here, but generally speaking, it does seem to have some issues with the main one being this all but forces those being cared for to use Alexa services for tasks throughout the day. Which just gives Amazon even more data. Something the company is obviously hungry for. Then there is the whole privacy aspect, and who’s to say that an eager caregiver wouldn’t set up the system without the other party knowing.
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