Microsoft is going all-in for bots. They want to own the ecosystem, from the bot development to a bot directory. I had a look at the SDK and their omnichannel API, and it all looks pretty solid. Don’t ask me why, but I don’t sense much excitement from the bot developer community. Time will say.
From an experiment to keep my team updated, this list has grown to 1810 subscribers with an 71% average open rate. Thank you all for your comments, suggestions, tips, and interesting conversations💃. By the way, if you are a B2C willing to make a move into this space in little time, hit reply and let’s talk!
Great analysis about chat bots from Benedict Evans, who touches on the challenge of narrowing down the domain of chat bots, and discusses this trend from the perspective of the big players in the smartphone ecosystem. By the way, I have been following his newsletter for years, which was one of my sources of inspiration to put time and effort into analyzing the space through this channel.
While Tay is back in the lab, let’s not forget that Microsoft’s bot Xiaoice is exchanging an average of 23 messages per session, and has texted with 40 million people. Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, is serious about bots, and also very optimistic about the developer community joining the party: “it reminds me of when I joined the company in 1992 and it was just before Windows NT and I was working on getting developers involved—I sense that now”.
It’s not that the mobile app is broken. But it definitely has some issues. This post talks about the most urgent ones, delivery (downloading and installing an app is no longer “cool”, but rather a commitment that many avoid) and discoverability (closed platforms whose contact lies behind the download/register wall).
Messaging apps as a channel to communicate with customers, as a way to pay, as your personal assistant, as a medium for content, and even possibly as the entry point for, well, everything. Conversational commerce has a tremendous amount of potential, and it’s no wonder that Shopify is excited about making the customer experience more convenient for customers.