California fires: smart speakers and emergency alerts

Sean Donelan sean at donelan.com
Mon Oct 16 02:09:21 CST 2017


On Sun, 15 Oct 2017, valdis.kletnieks at vt.edu wrote:
> On Fri, 13 Oct 2017 18:50:51 -0700, Joe Hamelin said:
>> I would think that Amazon knows where my Echo is since it's the same IP
>> that I order (way too much crap) from.
> It knows the usual delivery address.  That's not necessarily the same thing.
>

First, need to figure out if any smart speaker manufacturers have any 
plans to add emergency alerts to their product. Only need to solve the 
other problems if they do, otherwise it doesn't matter.


While VOIP phones needed exact addresses for 9-1-1 purposes, emergency 
alerts are rarely as specific as a city or county.  An exact 
longitude/latitude would be nice to have, but probably not necessary for 
most emergency alerts. All the smart speakers ask for the user's location, 
at least a zip code, during the installation. And they seem to use the 
typical advertising network IP address geolocation.

It would be creepy if an emergency alert was too targetted.  It may be 
better to keep it larger than a mile radius, rather than a single house.


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