Indonesia-based artificial intelligence (AI) startup Kata.ai announced the introduction of its new public-facing Kata Bot Platform, a tool that aims to help developers create and deploy chatbots with more efficiency and ease, freeing up their time to focus on building a conversational user experience.
A chatbot itself is an AI computer program designed to behave like a human that you can interact with, in order to get information or things done. The startup launched the platform at the INTERACT 2017 event, a new initiative by Kata.ai to continuously drive conversations and discussions about AI technology.
Kata Bot Platform works by providing developers with a basic production-grade framework that integrates complexity, organization, infrastructure, and machine learning from the get-go. Some of the most difficult parts of creating a conversational user experience include discourse management, channel management, and natural language processing. Kata Bot Platform handles all of these components and presents them in a neat platform that lets developers concentrate on making sure the end users enjoy a smooth experience.
“When we first began developing this, we could see that among the various existing bot frameworks, there was no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution. We wanted to simplify that for developers so that they could spend more of their time and skills on creating the best user experience possible,” said Kata.ai CTO Ahmad Rizqi Meydiarso.
He added, “We also understood that developers need a robust and flexible platform to help them build chatbots. That’s why Kata Bot Platform is easy to use. It also provides analytics and resources to give developers all the tools they need in one place.”
Any business that finds itself in need of a chatbot service can use the Kata Bot Platform to build it, no matter what size the enterprise is. The platform is “enterprise-grade, secure, and scalable,” the team said. This makes it a perfect fit for small startups, medium-sized businesses, and large enterprises alike.
Bigger businesses can bring their chatbots into the market in less time via Kata Bot Platform, while at the same time lowering their overhead costs on tech development and research and development (R&D). In theory, this will enable them to capture the value of AI in the present, as opposed to being trapped for years carrying out R&D from scratch.
Kata.ai also developed Kata Bot Platform in line with its vision of empowering a new wave of entrepreneurs in a “post-app” era. As the technology world looks toward the future in terms of what will come next, the company believes that the next big interactive platform between people and technology will inevitably be chatbots. The trend is already evident in a variety of social media platforms and e-commerce sites.
The potential for chatbots to reach vast numbers of people is undeniably large. Jemma, a female chatbot created by Kata.ai in partnership with Unilever, has already befriended more than 1.7 million people via messaging app LINE as per December 2017. Some chat sessions with Jemma even last for four hours, showing how engaged and invested consumers can become in chatbots.
“Considering that the latest technological revolution has birthed numerous businesses based on apps, we want to spearhead and empower the next wave of entrepreneurs to build the next big thing based on chatbots,” explained Kata.ai CEO Irzan Raditya. “We call them ‘Botpreneurs’, and our goal as a company is to enable them to grow in the future.”
Kata.ai’s vision is backed by a number of venture capitals in Indonesia, Korea, and Taiwan. The startup raised US$3.5 million in a series A round in August 2017 led by Taiwanese Trans-Pacific Technology Fund (TPTF), helping it grow and expand in its early stages.
Accenture predicts that in five years, AI will be the primary tool used in building brand awareness. The global consulting giant firm believes that in seven years, AI will likely be integrated into most people’s daily tasks. In ten years, digital assistants may be so pervasive in society that they keep employees productive all day, everyday. This is the kind of prediction that is sure to pique the interests of large consumer goods businesses and tech investors alike.
In less than one year, the total number of people who engage with chatbots built by Kata.ai has exceeded 26 million, exchanging more than 200 Million messages. In line with this success, Kata.ai has also been able to penetrate other sectors with its chatbots. It is currently working to adapt its technology for leading businesses in the telecommunications, consulting, banking, and retail industries.