“Alexa, how is the weather outside?” A few years ago, this phrase would have meant a human talking to another named Alexa and enquiring about the weather.

 

But today, we all understand that a human (for a few years at least hopefully!) is interacting with a virtual assistant/chatbot – Alexa – about their trivial to quintessential quest for knowledge/ information.

 

The above example showcases an important change in consumer behavior. Consumers have started trusting AI and preferring zero touch engagement – to provide them with information, to complete a service request – to basically get the job done.

 

What this behavioral change means for telecom applications? Can a customer engage with a chatbot to get his service requests/complaint handled? Can a bot offer new promotions/plans to a customer based on his profile? Can AIML-based software predict the customer future intent in terms of product purchase? Can zero touch technologies change the way telcos touch base with their customers or vice-versa?

 

Well, the answer to all of the above is ‘Yes’, and this is not just an in-paper paradigm shift but an on-ground reality. The technology to enable such interactions is already widely available. What is needed is a well-defined strategy from telcos to incorporate AIML with zero touch UI into their application stacks.

 

6d’s R&D team foresaw the emergence of AIML and we have been building AIML technology into our product lines and application layer. For instance, 6d’s Digital BSS solution and CVM solution (MAGIK), both incorporate the AIML and zero touch technologies into the application framework. From a customer outreach point of view, what this enables is an easy integration to commercially available chatbots like Alexa & Google Home. Further, there exists capability to integrate to custom/3PP chatbots as well.

 

A typical use case highlighting 6d Digital BSS platform’s AIML capability is customer asking for his bill amount, bill due date, etc.. to Alexa/GoogleHome. Also, if there is opt-in, chatbots like Alexa can provide reminders and bill notification as well. All this, with zero touch!

 

For 6d’s MAGIK platform, a simple use case would be a customer asking Alexa to check his current data plan (10GB/month) and upgrading it (50 GB/month).

 

Since AIML technologies are poised to gain wider acceptance and prevalence, it is prudent to build them into the telecom application stacks. Operators will gain by choosing such application vendors to increase their innovation speed and provide superior experience to their customers.

 

By: UTPAL RANJAN