Latest Amazon Acquisition Means Bezos May Have a Map of Your Home's Interior ... Especially If One of These Is Laying Around


Jeff Bezos’s Amazon now has access to see everything in your home with the recent purchase of iRobot.

iRobot OS is a new “software operating system for” robot home appliances like robot vacuums (think Roomba) and mops.

The software seeks to “provide its household bots with a deeper understanding of your home and your habits” according to The Verge, a technology news website.

iRobot’s technology will reportedly be helpful for the maps Amazon generates to guide its devices through the home.

“The vacuum company has detailed knowledge of our floor plans and, crucially, how they change. It knows where your kitchen is, which your kids’ rooms are, where your sofa is (and how new it is), and if you recently turned the guest room into a nursery,” smart home reviewer Jennifer Pattison Tuohy wrote in The Verge.

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“This type of data is digital gold to a company whose primary purpose is to sell you more stuff. While I’m interested to see how Amazon can leverage iRobot’s tech to improve its smart home ambitions, many are right to be concerned with the privacy implications.

“People want home automation to work better, but they don’t want to give up the intimate details of their lives for more convenience.”

Nevertheless, it appears that with the purchase of iRobot software and devices, that seems to be exactly what homeowners are doing.

Should Amazon have access to your private information?

Tuohy went to point out Amazon’s history of sharing personal data.

For instance, Ring, a subsidiary of Amazon, often shares data with police departments.

The Echo smart speakers are similarly “always listening (for the wake word).”

Combine all of these devices together in one home, and Amazon has “a pretty complete picture of your daily life,” Tuohy wrote.

Amazon’s goal is to implement “ambient intelligence,” essentially giving the company a full picture of the inner workings of your home at all times.

While some consumers may be excited at the prospect of having a team of robots maintain their home spaces, others will likely have privacy concerns.

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It is certainly understandable, given how much personal information Amazon could eventually have access to.

This is a sentiment both Democrats and Republicans seem to agree on.

Erica Joy, the Chief Technical Officer for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, listed off the types of “information” Amazon could soon have access to in people’s homes.

Her list included the following:

  • “maps of homes”
  • “medical records”
  • “home network activity”
  • “voice samples”
  • “videos of homes”
  • “grocery habits”
  • “vehicle movement”

Following the list, Joy added that there were more types of information Amazon has access to that she could not even fit within the word count of one tweet.

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Michael wrote for a number of entertainment news outlets before joining The Western Journal in 2020 as a staff reporter. He now manages the writing and reporting teams, overseeing the production of commentary, news and original reporting content.
Michael Austin graduated from Iowa State University in 2019. During his time in college, Michael volunteered as a social media influencer for both PragerU and Live Action. After graduation, he went on to work as a freelance journalist for various entertainment news sites before joining The Western Journal in 2020 as a staff reporter.

Since then, Michael has been promoted to the role of Manager of Writing and Reporting. His responsibilities now include managing and directing the production of commentary, news and original reporting content.
Ames, Iowa
Iowa State University
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