Inference Solutions Updates Virtual Agents to Answer Coronavirus Questions
The novel coronavirus epidemic has prompted a rush of calls to businesses and organizations from people seeking to find out how they are responding. Virtual agent developer Inference Solutions has set up a way for its clients to augment their virtual agents with answers on the subject quickly. Inference is waiving the license fee for up to five of the virtual agents to interested organizations
Voice Agent Answers
The virtual agents created by Inference operate as a low-cost AI call center, answering questions and handling tasks like appointments and payments on behalf of the company. The setup is designed to be easy to use by those without a technical background in a drag-and-drop format. Inference saw significant growth last year, updating to support for Google’s Contact Center AI integrating into WhatsApp and adding an automated call-steering application for Pizza Hut Australia, among other upgrades.
“A lot of customers are asking how to use virtual agents right now. They’ve been coming to us and asking what we can do,” Inference Solutions corporate communications director Allison Wilson told Voicebot in an interview. “The [pandemic] is impacting businesses across every vertical, and we wanted to help where we can. The agents are applicable to help desks, IT services, and other businesses, and governments can use it for sharing safety information.”
The coronavirus application performs much like the other virtual agent services, automating the responses in the same way. When someone calls in, the AI will be able to understand and respond to questions about the virus and what the organization wants to tell the caller about its response using natural language intents. As the global situation changes, the client will be able to update the answers as needed. The free licensing offer is available until the end of June.
“The virtual agents are easy to deploy because they are pre-built and ready to go,” Wilson said. “We just ask our customers for a spreadsheet of what questions and answers they want to add. We’re calling it an FAQ on-demand. They can upload the answers to the application, or we can do it for them.”
Conversational AI is beneficial as the pandemic shuts businesses and forces people into quarantine at home. Virtual agents can help maintain lines of communication for organizations and adapt in response to medical and economic news. For instance, Satisfi Labs created a pandemic-specific AI platform to answer the questions asked of its event and venue clients.
Governments and healthcare providers are relying on AI to help educate people as well. The British and Indian governments have each deployed responsive WhatsApp chatbots to answer questions and help people assess if they need to see a doctor. Developers like Orbita and Hyro are offering free versions of their AI platforms to healthcare providers to do the same. Until the spread of the virus is controlled, virtual agents are likely to become prevalent in every industry.
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