Earlier this month, we wrote about a funding round for a startup called Character·ai, valuing it at $1bn. Now that round is official.
AI startup whose chatbot mimics Billie Eilish and Kanye West valued at $1bn
It’s been a busy messaging morning for Music Ally. “Who even are you lol?” asked Billie Eilish, before asking us for recommendations.
Snapchat adds ‘My AI’ but warns it is ‘prone to hallucination’
We thought Peak Chatbot was a few years ago, but the idea is having a ChatGPT-fuelled rebirth in 2023. Snapchat is the latest example.
Meta releases BlenderBot 3 chatbot for ‘in the wild’ tests
It has built and released a chatbot called BlenderBot 3 for people (initially only in the US) to interact with.
Google Meena may be the most chatty chatbot so far
Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant may be clever, but we’re not sure whether we’d class any of them as entertaining conversationalists. But Google has a new chatbot, called Meena, which […]
Sendmate boss defends messaging bots after marketer criticism
It seems like the end of 2018 is the time for the ‘trough of disillusion’ around messaging bots, with recent criticism of their effectiveness by marketing pros Jon Loomer (here) […]
Dua Lipa #DuaMoods chatbot analyses faces to create playlists
The first time Facebook automatically tagged friends in our photos, we boggled (before muttering suspiciously about privacy settings). Now we’re resigned to a future of ubiquitous facial-recognition technology. Does that include music-streaming?
Dua Lipa is getting in early on that action with the launch of her #DuaMoods website, which is billed as “the ultimate mood playlist generator”. Developed by agency Modern English, the site involves nattering to a Dua Lipa chatbot and uploading a selfie, which is then used as the basis for a “perfect playlist based on facial recognition”.
Stashimi releases figures for G-Eazy and Zedd messaging bots
Startup Stashimi has built a platform for artist messaging bots, working with artists including G-Eazy, Zedd, Kelly Clarkson and Blake Shelton. The company says it has more than 100 artists using its tool to create bots for Facebook Messenger, and this week it’s published some figures for two of them: G-Eazy and Zedd.
Stashimi worked with G-Eazy’s social team as well as label RCA’s marketing team to launch his bot for his ‘The Beautiful & Damned’ album, with a mixture of messages about the album’s recording process, lyrics quizzes, photo filters and other news.
Messenger bot makers reveal ‘pause’ in new bot launches
Want to launch a new Facebook Messenger bot in the next few weeks? Good luck with that.
As part of the fallout from the ongoing Cambridge Analytica revelations, the social network has “paused” app reviews while it implements changes to its platform. It has now emerged that this also applies to the approval of all new bots launched for its Messenger app.
Startup Botsify alerted its customers to the news yesterday. “Basically, all the pages and chatbots that are connected to Botsify will be working fine, but you cannot connect new pages until Facebook updates their policies or resume the app-review process,” it explained in an email. “We expect this process should not take more than 1-2 weeks.”
Palo Santo Messenger bot kicks off Years & Years album campaign
What is Palo Santo? It’s a fictional city where androids and humans live side-by-side, of course. But don’t worry if you didn’t know that: this is only just being revealed, bit-by-bit, to fans of British band Years & Years.
Or perhaps we should say bit-by-bot, since one of the initial planks in the campaign for the band’s upcoming second album is a Messenger bot launched by label Polydor Records UK.
Called the Palo Santo Entertainment Network Server (PSEN for short) it promises “a range of civic services for androids and the non-organic” – a mixture of cryptic clues and video clips, which signed up more than 5,000 subscribers in two days after its launch.
Poppy teams up with Microsoft to promote Zo chatbot
Poppy is the singer whose spooky YouTube videos have won her a fervent online fanbase – and now a brand partnership with Microsoft to promote one of its chatbots.
No, not the Nazi one, thankfully.
Zo is a Microsoft-developed bot that lives on services including Facebook Messenger and Kik, and which is now being featured in some of Poppy’s YouTube videos.
Will I Am gets $117m to take on Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant
News that Will I Am’s tech startup I.am+ is making a voice assistant to rival Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri and Google Assistant may not have investors running to sell shares in the three tech-giants.
After all, the company’s foto.sosho iPhone camera case, Puls and Dial smartwatches, and Buttons Bluetooth headphones haven’t been commercial hits – and in some cases, have been the subject of critical derision.