If you don’t like the idea of computers and technology constantly digging further into your privacy, you probably won’t like what the future of communication has in store for you.
At Facebook’s annual developer conference, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook’s Messenger app will be getting a little bit of an upgrade. You see, right now whenever you want to check out a restaurant or service, there’s usually an app you can download on your phone for it. Like an app for Dominos Pizza, or for Starbucks–you practically need one for all of your favourite stores. But the impending upgrade will essentially make all that app downloading unnecessary, because it will allow developers to build something called “bots” directly into the instant messaging platform.
These bots will scan your conversation as you write and will sometimes offer suggestions based on the things you say. For example, if you talk to your friend about how you love food at a certain restaurant, the bot may pull up the restaurant’s website right in your conversation. It might even suggest what the highest-rated menu items are, and then give you the ability to purchase them for takeout.
“No one wants to have to install a new app for every service or business that they want to interact with,” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, according to the CBC. “So we think there’s got to be a better way to do this. We think that you should just be able to message your business in the same way you would message a friend.”
This could apply for all kinds of services, whether it’s a flower delivery, subscription service or even a specific product. And while the idea of a bot scanning your conversations might seem a little unsettling, there are some benefits to the change. For one, the days of installing app after app are probably coming to an end. You also won’t have to input your payment information everytime you make a new order, because it will be pulled directly from Facebook.
And when you consider that the social media giant also owns WhatsApp, it’s safe to say these bots will be prevalent in a lot of people’s conversations.
If it’s any consolation though, Facebook and Google already monitor what you say and search for so that they can place targeted ads on the pages you visit. So this isn’t really anything new, it will just be more noticeable.
Now excuse us while we ask Facebook for a pizza.