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Taking a closer look at bots from Apple, Facebook and Google

Matt Kapko | July 14, 2016
'Bots' are hot today, and popular tech companies including Apple, Facebook and Google all take dramatically different approaches to bot technology. Here's what bots from these consumer giants could mean to enterprises.

"[Facebook and Google] want to get their existing customers to utilize their platforms by providing tools that can easily be embraced, ultimately directing more traffic to their pages," says Claus Jepsen, chief architect at enterprise software vendor Unit4. "Apple, on the other hand, wants their customers to integrate to other capabilities within the software itself, and relies heavily on Siri's closed platform." 

Bots in enterprise

A paradigm shift is currently happening in the ways people use technology today and how they'll use it in the future, according to Jepsen. "Data collection is becoming pervasive, automatic and non-intrusive, instead of spotty, manual, and requiring high levels of interaction," he says. The separation between work and personal life will erode as bots empower people to interact and communicate with software in much the same ways that they talk to friends, Jepsen says. This shift "will allow for more unified exchanges between a consumer's work and day-to-day requests."

"For IT leadership, bots are an opportunity to reduce trivial help desk to-dos and allow their teams to focus on the important initiatives that will make a real difference to their business," according to Fingerman. 

Apple, Facebook and Google may currently lead pack when it comes to consumer bots, but Fingerman thinks things will play out differently in enterprise. "We often talk about how it is important for businesses to look to consumer technology as a model for building a great user experience for their workforce," he says. "But the use cases are dramatically different, so we don't see a future with a lot of bot crossover."


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