This week SRI International launched Kasisto, a new venture that integrates conversational capabilities into enterprise mobile products. This means companies can now create branded and configurable virtual personal assistants (VPAs) with deep domain knowledge to provide a fully automated, human-like interaction within their mobile applications.
Kasisto will initially focus on the financial services market. The company unveiled its technology this week at the FinTech Innovator Lab Demo Day. This New York-based incubator program focuses on cutting-edge technologies for the financial services industry. Kasisto was among a handful of companies selected by executives from some of the world’s largest banks. Kasisto is already seeing great customer opportunities and will be sharing more news in the coming months.
Kasisto joins a long list of SRI speech and artificial intelligence (AI) technology-based ventures, including Nuance, Siri (acquired by Apple), Tempo AI, Trapit, and Desti (acquired by HERE, a Nokia company). Kasisto embodies the next generation of VPA technologies that have evolved to meet a growing market need: context awareness that leverages knowledge about a vertical market to deliver a user experience rivaling human interaction, and in some cases exceeding human performance.
Enterprise mobile banking applications have lagged behind online portals in features and functionality. Consumers are frustrated, and companies are disappointed. For example, too many mobile interactions become costly as consumers connect to live customer service representatives to resolve issues or conduct even basic transactions.
Using Kasisto’s conversational ability, consumers can accomplish banking tasks with ease—tasks that were previously impossible or too complex to do on a mobile device. Kasisto understands both the user’s intent and the transaction context to deliver a superior experience based on detailed financial service knowledge. For example, a user can ask for bank fees in a particular month and then ask “What about this vendor?” Kasisto’s context-aware assistant understands that the user is still interested in fees and quickly retrieves the information now tailored to the particular vendor. Unlike human interaction, conversational assistants are always available, retrieving relevant information at the user’s request and knowing all of the bank’s procedures and latest offers.
Conversation-enabled applications, such as what Kasisto offers, will become the new standard by which consumers expect to interact with their mobile devices. They will be feature-rich, provide more functionality and offer a superior user experience to the mobile applications of today.
Congratulations to Kasisto CEO Zor Gorelov and the Kasisto team!