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The Wall Street Journal: Amazon, Google plan to turn their home speakers into home phones

Amazon.com Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google are considering a new use for their popular home speakers: becoming the home phone.

Amazon’s Echo AMZN, +0.33% or the Google GOOGL, +0.02% Home could be used to make or receive calls, people familiar with the matter said, a functionality that would give them further control over consumers’ digital lives at home.

The tech giants could launch the feature this year, the people said — but the effort is hung up over concerns about privacy, telecom regulations and emergency services. And they are aware of the inherent awkwardness of having phone conversations on a speaker.

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