Google to launch a smarter mobile-messaging app

Google is trying to tap into the artificial intelligence saga with its new mobile-messaging service to come in par with its rivals like Facebook Inc. While Flipkart’s on-app chatting feature might have eased out the task of choosing Christmas presents, Google’s chatbot technology would aim to carve out the answers to all your questions by scouring through the Web and other relevant sources.

To attain this function, a unit of Alphabet Inc. would integrate chatbots and software programs that will respond to the queries posted as text messages. So instead of typing your queries on the search engine, these chatbots will come to your rescue. But hey, will this move not threaten Google’s role as the premier discovery engine!

“All users care about is a convenient way to find what they are looking for and if Google isn’t in front of the consumer that is a problem for them,” said Scott Stanford, co-founder of venture-capital firm Sherpa Capital. “Messaging is a subset of the Internet where Google is not strong. They have to win and be the dominant player in messaging.”

Google veteran Nick Fox has been spearheading the process since last year with his team. Tech news website The Information reported his new role as vice president of communications products earlier this year.

In August this year, Facebook had launched a digital assistant called M that enabled users to book flights, restaurants, purchase books and even take appointments through texts. Another messaging app called Luka.ai is developing a similar app that would use artificial technology for assisting users. Slack Technologies Inc., which focuses on workplace communication, offers chatbots to automate tasks like translating text.

Google has not yet announced the launch date of this service or what it would name it. With its prior efforts like Hangouts and Messenger not creating much of a spark, it would be interesting to note how this new service will thrust its impact among masses.