Reliance Jio has announced the launch of JioInteract, an “AI-based brand engagement platform” that is essentially a bot for enabling interactive video calls.
Jio is positioning the platform as a “VCBaaS (Video Call Bot as a Service)”, which it says will eventually be used to support customer-facing apps like “video call centers, video catalogues, and virtual showrooms” that will be rolled out over the next few weeks.
To promote JioInteract, the first service launched on the platform is “Live Video Call”, in which mobile subscribers can use the MyJio app to make a video call to Hindi movie star Amitabh Bachchan and ask him questions about his latest film, 102 Not Out.
Despite the “live” descriptor, callers won’t actually be talking to Bachchan directly, but they will be able to interact with a video of him and have an AI-powered conversation, as long as it’s about the new film.
From the release [PDF]:
This unique and innovative service uses a powerful artificial intelligence based platform to listen to user questions and respond to them in the most appropriate way.
In addition, the platform has a unique auto-learning feature that helps improve the answering accuracy.
However, according to Business Today, which tried out the service, the AI part still needs work:
The service sounds interesting but falls flat when it comes to actual AI capabilities. The answers are pre-recorded by Mr Bachchan. The app keeps recycling the response regardless of the questions asked.
That said, users may still enjoy the novelty of a simulated video call with a celebrity.
In any case, Jio is touting the platform as an “effective brand engagement” tool that “will reposition the way brands and customers think of engagement.” Jio also says it’s looking to developers to create other apps for the platform such as virtual showrooms, product demos and e-commerce ordering carts.