Amazon privacy puzzle box the indoor drone handles a map of your home
Amazon Privacy Puzzle Box: The drone in question is the Ring Forever Home Cam, an independent indoor drone that can handle a map of your home independently fly around to check out new noises, or run a patrol when you’re not home.
The drone was only one of great over a dozen product details Amazon made yesterday including a full-on game streaming service to play directly with Microsoft and Google. But everybody’s visceral reaction to the idea of an Amazon-powered drone flitting its camera about your house is what will be recognized.
Amazon Privacy Puzzle Box CEO Aaron Levie pretty much summed it up, tweeting, “If 2020 wasn’t already dystopian just for you, Amazon just announced an indoor flying drone camera.” The second-most famous answer is that this thing would get entirely ruined by an overeager cat or dog.
With a settled indoor security camera, you’d nevermore know notable was seeing in. And it’s followed with people feeling strangers taking over their cameras because they reused their password. Or worse, because a Ring employee was staring at the video, they shouldn’t have done.
But the drone stole people out in access the current security cameras didn’t. That combines a level of agency and intentionality. A fixed camera sees what we point it at. A drone could see anything in our house. Instead of growing from a plastic docking station, its strength as well is growing straight out of the uncanny valley.
Amazon is developing a track record of products that execute people to do a double-take when they believe about how its strength affects their privacy.
The drone, the other Ring cameras, and features, the Sidewalk mesh network, the Halo app that requires you to be scanned in your underpants: there’s almost a shamelessness to them. It’s like Amazon has taken a dare to make the most unsettling consumer products it could.
There is also a new tension between products that genuinely feel offensive and the fact that Amazon is making a lot of the right things when it happens to privacy.
It has added two-factor authentication to Ring cameras and will soon give the option for end-to-end encryption for video, so nobody, but you could probably access it. It’s figuring more steps to delete your data by talking to Alexa, and it has a privacy control dashboard that is pretty good.
Then there’s Amazon Sidewalk. It’s Amazon’s latest mesh network that provides its devices and third-party devices to understand and communicate with each other at medium distances state, less than half a mile.
As with trackers like Tile (which will quickly work with Sidewalk), devices can securely communicate their location within the mesh network, and Sidewalk can also be done for single commands for IoT devices, like checking to see if your mailbox was opened.
Here’s a different one: Halo, Amazon’s fitness service that enables you to create a 3D scan of your body that it can use to estimate your body fat. Again: very creepy. And also, Amazon has solutions for most of the next what-about when it happens to privacy and security.
The modern form of the drone, the mesh network, and the body scanner may all be special enough to be safe to use, but even then, they nevertheless seem offensive. They come right out of a future that we quickly aren’t so keen to rush toward anymore after the last half-decade of technological convulsions have wracked the country.