Bengaluru-based on-demand chat enabled AI app MagicX, on Tuesday, raised $1 million from Kris Gopalakrishnan Co-founder and Former Vice Chairman and CEO of Infosys, Aarti Grover, MD of CMS Computers Ltd, Lionrock, Dr. Ranjan Pai, MD and CEO of Manipal Education and Medical Group, and R Ramaraj, Co-founder of Sify.
The funds will be primarily used for technology upgradation, addition of more service categories, marketing initiatives and team expansions. Pratyush Prasanna, co-Founder, MagicX and ex-VP Paytm and founder and CEO of Plustxt, believes that this round of funding will bring a sharper structure to the organisation.
According to Kris Gopalkrishnan , AI and bots are the next frontier of technology. He believes that the MagicX team brings in strong skillsets to execute their plans and take chat-based apps to the next level.
Launched in February this year, MagicX enables its consumers carry day-to-day tasks like bill payments, recharge, food ordering, flight booking and other services via chat. So far, MagicX has tie ups with almost20 e-commerce, recharge, grocery, travel and bill payment platforms. Promoted by GrowthStory, the platform founded by Meena Ganesh and K Ganesh, MagicX is currently in talks with various VC firms to raise Series A round of funding.
Pratyush said, “We are looking at exploring at different language choices. People from different parts of the country should be able to chat and get responses in the language they prefer and not in English."
Users spend a chunk of their time on their smartphones on chatting applications such as WhatsApp, (Facebook )Messenger, Hike and WeChat. WhatsApp has one billion monthly active users (MAU), Messenger has 800 million and WeChat has 697 million.
There are many on-demand chat-based startups employing hundreds of customer service agents to answer your questions. The problem with human-based chat is that all agents can’t perform up to the level of best agents. TechSparks 2015 Tech30 startup Niki.ai is using AI and NLP (Natural Language Processing) to solve some of the customer issues.
AI can bring the much needed standardization in the system. Siri gets one billion requests per week. According to Goldman Sachs, by 2020, millenials will account for 40 percent of all consumers in the US; $700 billion in annual buying power by 2017. Thirty-eight percent of millenials prefer to use instant messaging to communicate with brands.
AI-based chat apps have a bright future. When and who will crack it first still remains a mystery. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.