The Opus Conversational Commerce Conference took place mid-September in San Francisco. It is the fifth edition of the event previously called the Intelligent Assistance Conference. It has become a lighthouse event, gathering industry experts, vendors and enterprise early adopters of conversational Artificial Intelligence (AI). It provides the perfect opportunity for discussing some market trends.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Referring to Salesforce Service Cloud as a new entrant in the customer interaction management space is almost an oxymoron. With a run rate of over $3 Billion, it looks more like a gorilla. Yet, Service Cloud is mostly known for case management. I spoke with Bill Patterson, who became its General Manager last summer. He agrees that the market is not well aware of its interaction management capabilities. Let’s explore what it has to offer.
Assistants and bots have reached a new adoption high. Opus Research found spending on intelligent assistants will cross the $2 billion mark in 2018 and will exceed $5 billion by 2021. However, many businesses are finding their projects harder to scale than they expected.
In this Industry Buzz podcast the BCStrategies Experts address a variety of recent news items.
I just returned from a quick trip to New Hampshire for a client engagement. Three or four weeks ago my client booked a hotel room on my behalf and I received an email confirmation from the Crowne Plaza. I went to put it on my calendar, and found that my Big Brother had already read my email and entered it for me. Aha! I thought. This time Brother Google made a mistake. Brother Google got the dates right, but he noted I was staying at the DoubleTree.
Turns out Brother was right. A week before my arrival the hotel changed ownership.
8x8, Inc. has announced the acquisition of MarianaIQ, a startup focused on AI and deep learning. With this acquisition, 8x8 can add MarianaIQ’s deep learning capabilities to its X-Series, bringing new key Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities to its enterprise communications line.
Five9, a provider of cloud contact communication software, has announced the Five9 Spring Release 2018. With this new release come new enhancements to its portfolio, bringing artificial intelligence (AI) to contact centers.
The key elements to the Spring Release 2018 are in Five9 Genius and Engagement Workflow. However, the Spring Release also includes enhancements for the rest of Five9’s portfolio, including extending the open platform, a multi-role performance dashboard, and a new Supervisor console.
In the rush to embrace convenience and lower operational costs, voice quality often gets the short end of the stick. Cellular service and voice over IP (VoIP) are two examples where individuals and businesses have, at first, been willing to accept dropped calls and compromises in audio in exchange for mobility, more features, and smaller bills. But savings and benefits are fleeting if customers are alienated and next-generation voice services are hamstrung because they don’t deliver reliable and differentiated services that please customers.
If you happen to be in the London area on May 16-17, be sure to attend UC Expo, the largest Unified Communications and Collaboration event in Europe. The theme of the two-day conference is Smarter Collaboration, featuring a range of keynote presenters, as well as panels and discussions on collaboration, AI, cloud, security, and more.