Cisco to acquire AI startup MindMeld for $125 million


Cisco today announced plans to acquire AI startup MindMeld for $125 million. Cisco decided to acquire MindMeld, a company that's been called "Siri on steroids," because many bot experiences today are disappointing, IoT and applications VP Rowan Trollope wrote in a blog post today. "Bringing the MindMeld team to Cisco is a giant leap forward in helping our customers experience the next generation of interactive, conversational interfaces." Cisco collaboration software competition includes other enterprise chat players including Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts Chat, and Slack.

Machaao Reveals the Secret of Its Chatbot Success – SAT Press Releases


Machaao's ChatBot was recognized for its impressive growth and will receive access to free tools and services from Facebook partners, a global startup community, and support from Facebook's team. FbStart helps startup's turn their great app into an even better business. But Machaao's not an App! It's a ChatBot, so what brought this change? Bot Script: This is what differentiates an App from a Bot. And the Team at Machaao has worked hard on creating a definitive bot script by trying to predict or mimic user interactions.

Second-gen Nvidia Shield TV hands-on: All the new killer features Nvidia didn't talk about


For cord cutters who want nothing but the best, Nvidia's $200 Shield TV console has always been the box of choice for streaming videos and even games. At CES 2017, the company announced a new-and-improved version that adds in HDR support, refines gaming and entertainment options, and even transforms the Android TV device into a voice-controlled rival of the Amazon Echo. We've already covered all the details revealed during Nvidia's CES 2017 press conference, but I just spent over an hour at Nvidia's suite to learn more about the new Shield TV's every nook and cranny. Here are some initial impressions, and a look at some of the more nitty-gritty improvements that weren't mentioned during the keynote. Before we even get into flashy features like smart-home controls and Google Assistant, the second-gen Shield TV packs worthwhile quality-of-life improvements over its predecessor.

Mercedes-Benz delivers integration of the Google Assistant


Mercedes-Benz is one of the first Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to combine the Google Assistant on Google Home with their vehicles, and signals another step forward in the company's connectivity strategy – seamless and intelligent interaction between the customer's Internet of Things (IoT)/Wearables devices and their Mercedes-Benz Cars. "In the last decade, we've seen a range of benefits when smart technology is combined with transportation," said Sajjad Khan, vice president of digital vehicle & mobility at Daimler. "This newest integration shows just how intelligent the car of the future will be, and we plan to roll out more applications as the year progresses that will make daily life even more accessible and convenient." Arriving in the first months of 2017 Mercedes-Benz customers will be able in specific markets to communicate with their cars through their Google Home. Streamlining the customer's digital lifestyle by connecting the car to the IoT has been a rapid evolution during the last few years.

Deloitte and IPsoft to customise AI agent Amelia for Australian market


Deloitte and IPsoft have signed an agreement to further develop IPsoft's cognitive platform Amelia in Australia. In July, Deloitte announced a partnership with IPsoft to roll out two of IPsoft's products to its US clients: Amelia, an AI platform similar to Amazon's Alexa, and IPcenter, an autonomic IT management platform. The companies will now be customising the Amelia platform for the Australian market. Often compared to Apple's Siri and Amazon's Alexa, Amelia is is touted as more expressive than her AI peers. Alan Marshall, Deloitte's Analytics and Cognitive Technology practice leader, said Amelia has a unique natural language processing capability that means she can engage in dialogues just like humans.

Amazon Announces No-Line Retail Shopping Experience With Amazon Go


There is a point where we will blankly stare at our Amazon Alexa devices and wish that it wasn't so easy to order groceries and other retail goods. There has got to be some sort of alternative right? That alternative is Amazon Go, a new retail experience that proves that even Amazon knows that brick and mortar isn't dead yet. If you prefer not to stand in the middle of Walmart, softly crying to yourself at the muddled masses of humanity, but still like to physically go shopping then Amazon Go is the future you are waiting for. Amazon Go is a literal brick and mortar store, announced today.

Conversational commerce: killer direct channel or just plain confusing?


Driving so-called'conversational commerce' is the next phase in the travel company-customer relationship but it's a complicated affair, as Pamela Whitby has been finding out In what Thomson is hailing as an'industry first', last week the holiday group said it would trial a travel search tool using IBM's Watson Technology, which uses natural language processing (NLP) and artificial intelligence to allow computers to think like a human. In a company press release, Jeremy Osborne, Director of Strategic Innovation, TUI UK&I is quoted saying: "We wanted to test whether a conversational search experience would resonate with our customers as a new, fun and easy way to find their ideal holiday". And the response, it seems, was overwhelmingly positive with 77% of participants in the survey saying they would find a virtual assistant useful. The idea is that Thomson customers will be able to interact via a simple chat interface to get responses in real-time to their holiday queries.For the uninitiated, this may sound like Thomson is launching a chat bot. But the group's conversational tool, which is still in beta, is still one step away from this.

Mastercard Makes Commerce More Conversational with Launch of Chatbots for Banks and Merchants


NEW YORK & LAS VEGAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today at Money 20/20, Mastercard announced its plans to launch artificial intelligence (AI) bots that allow consumers to transact, manage finances, and shop via messaging platforms. According to research firm Gartner, nearly $2 billion in online sales will be performed exclusively through mobile digital assistants by the end of 2016.1 Mastercard is developing bots for both its merchant and bank partners, which will use chat, messaging and natural language interfaces to communicate with consumers. With the Mastercard bots, partners can have a true dialogue with consumers and provide personalized service, seamless user experience and contextual offers and rewards. Mastercard KAI, the Mastercard bot for banks, will seamlessly extend Mastercard services to customers on messaging platforms and make financial information and decisions part of consumers' everyday lives. In this testing phase on Messenger, Mastercard is partnering with Kasisto, the company that created KAI Banking, the conversational artificial intelligence (AI) platform, to power branded virtual assistants and smart bots for financial services and is a current participant in the Mastercard Start Path Global program.

Google set to open popup Pixel showroom in New York

Daily Mail

Google is to open a pop up showroom in Manhattan's trendy Soho as it bids to take on apple with its new range of Pixel phones. The firm confirmed the Spring Street location, close to Apple's own Soho store, will open to the public on the 20th October to show off the firm's newly announced range of products, which include phones and its smart speaker Google Home. However, a source said it would not sell items - but simply let the public try them out before ordering online or in traditional stores. At a special event in San Francisco earlier the firm is unveiling a raft of new products - even though most of them have already leaked online. They include two new phones, a Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL The search giant showed off a plethora of products from phones to TV dongles and even a new home router to boost wifi speeds earlier this week - and said AI was key to all of them.

Chatbots, Live Chat Go On-Demand


Rapidfy, an on-demand platform that connects customers with service professionals and small and medium enterprises is looking to improve how these professionals interact with customers. The firm announced today (Sept. Rapidfy's Live Chat feature will allow customers to communicate via a service professional's website, Facebook or the Rapidfy platform. The chatbots will use artificial intelligence to help service professionals reach and communicate with customers in an affordable way. Just last week, Facebook announced 30,000 bots would soon be payment-enabled for the 900 million users of its Messenger platform.