AI isn’t yet ready to pass for human on video calls

Data: Meet ad creative

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Leading up to Superbowl Sunday, Amazon flooded social media with coquettish ads teasing “Alexa’s new body.” Its gameday commercial depicts one woman’s fantasy of the AI voice assistant embodied by actor Michael B. Jordan, who seductively caters to her every whim — to the consternation of her increasingly irate husband. No doubt most viewers walked away giggling at the implausible idea of Amazon’s new line of spouse replacement robots, but the reality is that embodied, humanlike AI may be closer than you think.

Today, AI avatars — i.e., AI rendered with a digital body and/or face — lack the sex appeal of Michael B. Most, in fact, are downright creepy. Research shows that imbuing robots with

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