6 Fascinating Things You Can Do with Conversational AI Technology

Layne Hofman and Adriana Campoy
January 25, 2019

Less than 10 years ago, the idea of talking to your phone or speaking to technology at all was reserved only for science fiction movies set in the distant future, along with flying cars and traveling at warp speed. With the introduction of Siri in 2011, Conversational AI technology became available to a wide public for the first time, and voice assistants began merging into our daily lives in a more natural way.

Google, Microsoft, and Amazon quickly followed in subsequent years with their own versions: Google Now, Cortana, and Alexa. You can even get a voice assistant built into your oven or refrigerator.

These days it's not difficult to imagine a future in which voice assistants are completely integrated into our lives, even without the constraints of a device. As conversational AI becomes a normal part of our lives, we can imagine endless possibilities.

Here are 6 industries that could greatly benefit from Conversational AI technology right now, and what a Conversational AI application could do for them.

1. Sales

Sales representatives spend a lot of time in the car and on the road visiting customers. For their mobile lifestyle, a conversational AI application can ensure that time spent driving between destinations is also productive time. Sales representatives can get information and notes about their next client visit, check on client preferences, receive reminders of their schedule, and get directions to their next destination all while keeping their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road.

2. Long-haul Truck Drivers

At any given time in the United States, there are an estimated 1.7 million truck drivers on the highway. Long-haul truck drivers can spend up to several weeks at a time on the road away from family and friends and can spend up to 11 hours driving per day, which can be taxing both physically and emotionally.

A conversational AI application could serve several purposes for long-haul drivers who spend the majority of their waking hours behind the wheel, allowing them to access data and keep in touch with family and friends hands-free even while driving.

Keeping in touch with dispatchers with important information about cargo, destinations, and logistics can increase driver efficiency and make sure they're in contact while on the road. They could also access information about the best truck stops or restaurants on their route and even get information about healthier options to decrease dependence on junk food, which can take a toll on a driver's health and alertness.

To combat loneliness, conversational AI could help truckers keep in touch with family and friends on the road and can even serve as a modern-day CB radio, allowing truckers to get in touch with each other, share information, and have a friendly conversation with another driver who is also on the road for long hours. This could even have safety benefits, helping drivers stay engaged and awake on long stretches.

3. Healthcare

Advancements in healthcare are probably one of the greatest potential uses for technology. Not only can technology improve medical procedures, but it can also bring patients closer to the healthcare system and empower them to navigate their own health proactively.

Conversational AI technology has the potential to revolutionize patient follow-up care, taking the burden off patients to remember to input their information and allowing patients to simply respond to questions and log their data vocally when the system requests the information. This can also be extremely useful for drug studies that require participants to log information about symptoms and progress. A conversational system can even answer patient's questions about follow-up care or basic concerns, instructing them to seek a medical professional when necessary.

4. Lab Technicians and Researchers

In a lab or research environment, it's often necessary to take exact notes on actions and experiments, but it's not always easy to take these notes in a controlled lab environment. Conversational AI voice technology can allow lab technicians to simply narrate their actions and take notes in real time without doubling efforts and without disengaging from their work.

In a recent success case, an AI engineering services provider won first place at the INQBET hackathon with an AI Lab Assistant for Procter & Gamble. Previously P&G required lab workers to record their actions in a paper notebook and later transfer the data to an electronic log. However, only 18% of the electronic lab notebooks were filled out, signifying a huge problem. A conversational AI application could easily eliminate this issue, allowing technicians to log their electronic notebooks as they work, saving valuable time and resources in any lab environment.

5. Customer Service

Conversational AI can be used to automate common customer interactions and customer service inquiries over the phone or through any other medium where voice is an option. Gone are the days of frustrating linear chatbots that don't understand what your customer is saying. Modern AI technology uses natural language processing and machine learning to interact naturally with customers, in a way that feels human.

Instead of having to listen to several options which might not even fit the user's needs, customers can voice their inquiries and get an answer right away, skipping frustrating menus and saving live customer service agents' time.

A well-developed AI customer interface can understand the intent behind user interaction and get to the core of their need, either answering their question, solving their issue, or passing more complex inquiries on to live agents when necessary. However, an effective and modern conversational interface powered with machine learning can handle the majority of your most common inquiries quickly and efficiently, freeing up phone lines and giving live agents the space and freedom to invest their valuable time in customers who really need their help.

6. Business Executives and Decision Makers

People who make high stakes decisions like business executives and government officials often need access to complex and up-to-date databases and information in order to make the most informed decision possible. A Conversational AI interface can made that information accessible quicker than ever and propel data-driven decision making.

The Voice Revolution

The innovation brought about by Conversational AI has enormous potential to solve problems in a wide variety of industries. Companies and organizations are joining the revolution and reaping the benefits of this technology. Sophilabs has remarkable expertise in AI: last year we launched Hey Andy, a 100% voice commanded app which was conceived by our co-founder Sebastián Sassi. Find out more about Hey Andy and experience why we're excited to be active players in the voice revolution and help users access what they need.

"6 Fascinating Things You Can Do with Conversational AI Technology" by Layne Hofman and Adriana Campoy is licensed under CC BY SA. Source code examples are licensed under MIT.

Photo by rawpixel.

Categorized under research & learning.

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