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  5. ChatBots – your alter ego is here!

Author: Prayank Khandelwal, Amit Koshal, Rutuja Patil

The famous English computer scientist Alan Turing authored the paper “Computer Machinery and Intelligence” in 1950 and it led the foundation of Chatbots. Alan Turing and his team highlighted the “Artificial intelligence test” and calibrated the same from time to time. Thereby, Chatbots became known as the computer programs that could interact with the user through text or audio format. As the realm of artificial intelligence expanded, chatbots became intelligent and today, chatbots have become a part of our personal and professional lives seamlessly.

Proliferation of Chatbots –

            Globalization and technology exchange has been the crux of business expansion and growth over the past decades. With this expansion, chatbots have found their importance in various sectors like healthcare, retail, supply chain, production, automobile, and these innovations continue to happen around the globe. Voice-enabled chatbots like Watson, Alexa, Siri, Google, S Voice, Cortana have found their way into our daily lives by helping us play our favorite music to helping us with daily chores and eventually converting our living into a smart lifestyle. 

            Every technology company has enabled chatbots to assist in business functions to increase output, maintain accuracy, and increase resource efficiency. AI enabled chatbots have the capacity to learn from manual instructions and evolve their intelligence to provide a smarter response after each interaction. They not only serve the pre-programmed commands, but also, identify patterns in the input, analyze the inputs, and provide an actionable output. In 2016, facebook successfully deployed chatbots to help businesses provide service 24/7 and as a result, every professional page on facebook has a functional chatbot so to increase business and not lose any inbound lead. With the capability to do sentiment analysis and predict user interaction, every business website has a chatbot enabled to serve the customers.

Patents and bots –

            The USA leads the world in the chatbot patents with 339 inventions out of the total 929 inventions in the world, according to the Photon Legal research team (Figure 1). Some of the popular and trending chatbot patents include, ‘Systems for transitioning telephony-based and in-person servicing interactions to and from artificial intelligence (AI) chat session (US10630840B1)’, ‘Chatbot exercise machine (US2020114207A1)’ and ‘Methods and systems for managing chatbots with data access (US2020105257A1)’. As we embrace technology into our daily lives, newer ideas will keep evolving and they will need to be protected. Further to the technology evolution, Chatbots can be trained to perform tasks beyond manual cognition thereby further expanding the scope for innovation and scope of chatbot ideas, limitless. From another Photon Legal’s research (Figure 2), it is clear that around 558 patents are yet to be granted. 

Figure 2 : Current Legal status of patents filed under ‘Chatbots’

Chatbots beyond data

Most of the chatbots are enabled with a data repository to provide a programmed output. With the advent of artificial intelligence, chatbots have begun to understand the tone, sentiment, and customer personalities to respond smartly. Using machine learning and NLP, chatbots have learned to analyze exceptions and raise appropriate escalations at the appropriate time. Because of this growing intelligence, customers experience higher value in their investments.

            Some of the chatbot patents which are beyond data matrix are, ‘Method and device for computer based system to increase the attractiveness of the behavior execution (DE102018004609A1)’, ‘One stop service method for insurance product design and subscription using online messenger chatbot system (KR102028810B1), ‘Chatbot searching system and program (KR101993771B1)’, ‘Conversational log replay with voice and debugging information (US2019089656A1)’.

With the growing needs of humans, technology like chatbots need to evolve, so that it can be developed properly and various problems ranging from terrorism, climate change, misinformation, cyber warfare, poverty can be addressed to make this world a better place. Who knows your next telephone call to a doctor could be answered by a chatbot which will not only diagnose the health problem but also order the medicine for you and get it delivered to your house.

Stay in and stay safe!!

Source for Graphs and Data: PatSeer Platform

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