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Twitter introduces chatbots for businesses through direct messages

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Social media network, Twitter has launched chat bot features, Quick Replies and Welcome Message through direct messages for businesses to aid customer service. In a blog post, Twitter said that Welcome Messages can be used by businesses to initiate conversations with users while Quick Replies is a feature that prompts users with a set of options to choose from. Pizza Hut, Evernote, Spotify, Norton, and AirBnB appear to be among the first to be using this service.

Twitter appears to be trying to further strengthen its position as a platform enabling customer service. Considering that several customer service requests get processed faster on social media, thanks to the bad publicity that it creates, these features could actually be useful add-ons aiding this process.

Right now Twitter seems to be playing catch up with Facebook’s Messenger when it comes to chatbots. Mark Zuckerberg told analysts that Messenger has 33,000 chatbots and  has been increasing capabilities. In September businesses using chatbots could accept payments without sending users to an external website.


Other chatbot services in India

In July 2016, Travel search marketplace Ixigo rolled out Ixibaba, an artificial intelligence (AI) based chatbot which will answer simple questions related to all travel planning and booking queries.

In May 2016, chatbot service Niki.ai owned by Techbin Solutions Pvt. Ltd. raised a round of investment from Ratan Tata and existing investor, Unilazer Ventures.

In the same month, Artificial Intelligence (AI) based chat application MagicX raised $1 million from a clutch of investors including Kris Gopalakrishnan, Ranjan Pai, Hari Kumar and Aarti Grover.

In March 2016, online content discovery platform Outbrain launched “Outbrain for Chat,” a service that enables any publisher to launch applications or content bots across the leading Messaging platforms.

Other changes in Twitter

Twitter has had some big changes this week. Earlier this week in November 2016, Parminder Singh, Twitter’s Managing Director for Southeast Asia, MENA and India and Rishi Jaitly, Twitter’s India head quit the company.

In October 2016, Twitter decided to shutter its 6-second long loop video product Vine “in the coming months.”

In September 2016, Twitter laid off close to 20 employees at its development centre in Bangalore. It has also shut down all global engineering operations from this office.

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