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Pioneering conversational AI

One of the early entrants in conversational AI space, Aakrit Vaish, Co-Founder & CEO, Haptik, shares how the company is building engaging enterprise solutions by developing chatbots that help clients achieve their goals and optimise operational efficiency

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Haptik, a conversational AI platform, was conceptualised in Mumbai, in 2013, at a time when chatbots, or for that matter, the entire conversational AI space was unheard of. “However, we believed that chat and messaging will be an integral part of the 21st century smartphone world. Considering the mobile app industry’s growing popularity, a potential was seen in developing a conversational platform that went way beyond simply facilitating peer-to-peer chat,” states Aakrit Vaish, Co-Founder & CEO, Haptik. Since then, Haptik has been introducing cutting-edge technologies guiding entrepreneurs as they attempt to incorporate the latest conversational AI technologies in their operations.

The year 2017 was a milestone one for the company. In February, Haptik developed its first Facebook chatbot for Coca-Cola. “And, during the same year in October, we integrated our SDK with 40+ utility and six PGs/Wallets chatbots inside the Times of India, all under 1 Mb. This feat was managed for the first time in the world! We rounded off the year in the best possible manner by winning the Amazon AI Award for Customer Engagement,” says Vaish, adding that it was a major validation for their efforts as a company and the work they’ve done to build engaging enterprise solutions.

Focus on engagement
Haptik’s products are distributed across four use cases – lead generation, customer support, concierge, and feedback bots. The lead bots act as an organisation’s virtual sales agents, engaging visitors by making the experience more engaging than going through static landing pages. “Our bots have helped clients to register a 10X jump in lead conversation as compared to static forms. Our customer support bots help make customer service scalable. With their Hybrid text/speech and bot+human approach they are able to handle simple repetitive queries 24X7, helps engage with a large number of customers and win customer loyalty by being constantly responsive,” explains Vaish. Concierge bots help to complete daily tasks of various kinds, offering a great range of utility chatbots that can be integrated with mobile apps or website and driving better app engagement for our clients. “Lastly, our feedback bots allow our clients to identify what their customers want throughout their journey by collating and analysing user feedback and give actionable insights to businesses to make their customer experience better,” he adds.

The customers include Fortune 500 brands such as Samsung, Coca-Cola, Tata Group, Future Retail, ICICI Bank, Mahindra Group, among others.

Innovation is key
Vaish informs that every software required to develop, maintain and customise a bot is built fully in house, and a lot of investment is made in hiring the best technological as well as human resource. “Innovation is the seed word for us at Haptik, which continues to help us remain at the forefront of the virtual assistance and chatbot driven communication world of tomorrow,” he mentions.

The company is currently focusing on developing vernacular-language and voice based chatbots. Vaish believes that although the internet has been a massive empowering tool for everyone, it can still be a bit elitist due to its substantial predilection with English. “In a country as linguistically diverse as India, this might keep a large section of the population from truly exploring the power of the internet as a facilitator,” comments Vaish, informing that through vernacular language based bots and voicebots, they would like to develop technology truly inclusive and extend its benefits to everyone and truly democratise the digital space.

Haptik has partners in the US, Canada and is looking to expand to the UK as well. “We will also continue to encourage our employees to take up independent research into new possibilities in the automated assistance and chatbot domain and provide them with as much of resource-oriented help as possible,” concludes Vaish.

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