Video: Apple HomePod vs. Google Home Max

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Comments

  • Reply 41 of 43
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 21,243member
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    gatorguy said:
    The switches don't use hardware to disable the microphone, they just disable the "Ok Google" and "Alexa" commands.
    That's my take on this. 
    Incorrect at least with Google Home. The hardware switch really does turn off the microphone. 100%. You can find teardowns that show the on/off toggle switch physically interrupting the circuit. 

    Mic on/off

    Press the microphone mute button on the back of the device

    "Note: Muting the microphone prevents Google Home from listening or responding..."

    EDIT: And apparently incorrect with regard to Echo too as confirmed in teardowns:
    "There are plenty of teardown videos on YouTube. Basically it is a physical analog connection that cuts off circuit flow to the mic."
    Very interesting, I haven't read on that. If that's true, then bravo to Google and Amazon.

    I feel like what's more important is security while the mic is turned on.

    I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption. 
    Your security comes first in everything we do. If your data is not secure, it is not private. That is why we make sure that Google services are protected by one of the world’s most advanced security infrastructures. Conversations in Google Home are encrypted by default.
    Everyone uses encryption. Hell, even these forums use SSL, but I agree with vadimyuryev that "I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption."
    And that's perfectly proper. Most everyone here understands Apple better than Google and so it would be expected. None of us tend to trust unknowns for the most part.

    ...but what happens here too often is that a feature or action will be mentioned in connection with Apple in some "comparative review" and the assumption based on wording will be it's not something done by Google (or Amazon or Microsoft or whoever). Most of these things are pretty easy to find the facts on if you go looking for them, and it's not even that time-consuming. It would certainly be preferable to spreading misstatements.

     A prime example from recently is Apple promoting that Siri doesn't send anything to Apple servers unless you activate it with Hey Siri. Well that's absolutely correct. They don't. Neither does Google or Amazon, but the inference marketing hopes you make is that Apple is doing so while the others are not, those other guys are "always listening"but we're better than that. It was even implied here in an AI review by a staff member. It happens too often and Google inexplicably ignores the incorrect takeaway rather than taking the opportunity to clarify it. IMHO Google ends up complicit in the spread of FUD buy not getting out there with a much clearer message.
    That isn't to say that Apple can't do even better or that the others are inherently insecure. There's a huge amount of gray area between a flashing red sign warning you that something is wrong with the setup and the soft glow of green light saying everything is alright forever and ever. With security, gray is typically the best we ever get, and we have to constantly balance between feasibility and complexity. I think Apple did the right thing with making HomeKit very secure -and- did the right thing by easing up on that after it was too difficult for vendors to support, despite also recognizing that Apple overreached due to their focus on security.
    And we agree....
    edited February 2018
  • Reply 42 of 43
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 21,243member
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    gatorguy said:
    The switches don't use hardware to disable the microphone, they just disable the "Ok Google" and "Alexa" commands.
    That's my take on this. 
    Incorrect at least with Google Home. The hardware switch really does turn off the microphone. 100%. You can find teardowns that show the on/off toggle switch physically interrupting the circuit. 

    Mic on/off

    Press the microphone mute button on the back of the device

    "Note: Muting the microphone prevents Google Home from listening or responding..."

    EDIT: And apparently incorrect with regard to Echo too as confirmed in teardowns:
    "There are plenty of teardown videos on YouTube. Basically it is a physical analog connection that cuts off circuit flow to the mic."
    Very interesting, I haven't read on that. If that's true, then bravo to Google and Amazon.

    I feel like what's more important is security while the mic is turned on.

    I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption. 
    Your security comes first in everything we do. If your data is not secure, it is not private. That is why we make sure that Google services are protected by one of the world’s most advanced security infrastructures. Conversations in Google Home are encrypted by default.
    Everyone uses encryption. Hell, even these forums use SSL, but I agree with vadimyuryev that "I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption."
    And that's perfectly proper. Most everyone here understands Apple better than Google and so it would be expected. None of us tend to trust unknowns for the most part.

    ...but what happens here too often is that a feature or action will be mentioned in connection with Apple in some "comparative review" and the assumption based on wording will be it's not something done by Google (or Amazon or Microsoft or whoever). Most of these things are pretty easy to find the facts on if you go looking for them, and it's not even that time-consuming. It would certainly be preferable to spreading misstatements.

     A prime example from recently is Apple promoting that Siri doesn't send anything to Apple servers unless you activate it with Hey Siri. Well that's absolutely correct. They don't. Neither does Google or Amazon, but the inference marketing hopes you make is that Apple is doing so while the others are not, those other guys are "always listening"but we're better than that. It was even implied here in an AI review by a staff member. It happens too often and Google inexplicably ignores the incorrect takeaway rather than taking the opportunity to clarify it. IMHO Google ends up complicit in the spread of FUD buy not getting out there with a much clearer message.
    It's more than just encryption. Apple is also using anonymous ID. Apple has apparently built their system so that even if the gov't wants access to what you've said to your HomePod it won't be able to hand it over because it won't be accessible and any relevant data will have been mushed into a pot for mass analysis. 
    I'm not as certain as you that what's been said to Siri can't be reconnected to you personally if lawfully demanded. What makes me question it is “If a user chooses to turn off Siri, Apple will delete the User Data associated with the user’s Siri identifier, and the learning process will start all over again,” says Apple.  If it's truly completely anonymous and not available under any circumstances there should be no user data associated with the user's Siri identifier, nor any way to determine what data should be disassociated IMO. Whatever Apple has connected isn't otherwise disassociated from your Siri identifier for 6 months IIRC. 
    edited February 2018
  • Reply 43 of 43
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,333member
    gatorguy said:
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    Soli said:
    gatorguy said:
    gatorguy said:
    The switches don't use hardware to disable the microphone, they just disable the "Ok Google" and "Alexa" commands.
    That's my take on this. 
    Incorrect at least with Google Home. The hardware switch really does turn off the microphone. 100%. You can find teardowns that show the on/off toggle switch physically interrupting the circuit. 

    Mic on/off

    Press the microphone mute button on the back of the device

    "Note: Muting the microphone prevents Google Home from listening or responding..."

    EDIT: And apparently incorrect with regard to Echo too as confirmed in teardowns:
    "There are plenty of teardown videos on YouTube. Basically it is a physical analog connection that cuts off circuit flow to the mic."
    Very interesting, I haven't read on that. If that's true, then bravo to Google and Amazon.

    I feel like what's more important is security while the mic is turned on.

    I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption. 
    Your security comes first in everything we do. If your data is not secure, it is not private. That is why we make sure that Google services are protected by one of the world’s most advanced security infrastructures. Conversations in Google Home are encrypted by default.
    Everyone uses encryption. Hell, even these forums use SSL, but I agree with vadimyuryev that "I definitely feel more safe with Apple's methods of encryption."
    And that's perfectly proper. Most everyone here understands Apple better than Google and so it would be expected. None of us tend to trust unknowns for the most part.

    ...but what happens here too often is that a feature or action will be mentioned in connection with Apple in some "comparative review" and the assumption based on wording will be it's not something done by Google (or Amazon or Microsoft or whoever). Most of these things are pretty easy to find the facts on if you go looking for them, and it's not even that time-consuming. It would certainly be preferable to spreading misstatements.

     A prime example from recently is Apple promoting that Siri doesn't send anything to Apple servers unless you activate it with Hey Siri. Well that's absolutely correct. They don't. Neither does Google or Amazon, but the inference marketing hopes you make is that Apple is doing so while the others are not, those other guys are "always listening"but we're better than that. It was even implied here in an AI review by a staff member. It happens too often and Google inexplicably ignores the incorrect takeaway rather than taking the opportunity to clarify it. IMHO Google ends up complicit in the spread of FUD buy not getting out there with a much clearer message.
    It's more than just encryption. Apple is also using anonymous ID. Apple has apparently built their system so that even if the gov't wants access to what you've said to your HomePod it won't be able to hand it over because it won't be accessible and any relevant data will have been mushed into a pot for mass analysis. 
    I'm not as certain as you that what's been said to Siri can't be reconnected to you personally if lawfully demanded. What makes me question it is “If a user chooses to turn off Siri, Apple will delete the User Data associated with the user’s Siri identifier, and the learning process will start all over again,” says Apple.  If it's truly completely anonymous and not available under any circumstances there should be no user data associated with the user's Siri identifier, nor any way to determine what data should be disassociated IMO. Whatever Apple has connected isn't otherwise disassociated from your Siri identifier for 6 months IIRC. 
    Good point. There must be something that is associated with the device and user for it to be able to do all those server-based commands.

    I know they've stated something along the lines of making iCloud user accounts encrypted to the point that even Apple has no key (which doesn't mean it's inherently true, won't be crackable, or has happened), and they are working to bring more of Siri's services local (which doesn't mean that Siri will ever be an offline service or won't be crackable).
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