GSA Sees Potential in Personal Assistant Devices

The GSA has started a pilot program to explore the potential for federal agencies to provide services through tabletop “intelligent personal assistant devices” that are increasingly in use in both the home and office environments.

GSA’s Emerging Citizen Technology program “is working with federal agencies to prepare a solid understanding of the business cases and impact of these advances,” according to an announcement on digital.gov.

Considerations include privacy, security, accessibility, performance, and potential benefits to the public from “more efficient and open access to federal services,” it said. “Additionally, by sharing openly with private-sector innovators, small businesses, and new entries into the field, the tech industry will gain increased transparency into working with the federal government.”

The first phase is limited to read-only information but next steps could include self-service features, it said.

“Government and the tech industry are collaborating on this pilot to improve its outcomes, however, both have the option to accept or decline the proposed concepts at any point in this pilot,” it said.