Facebook has made no secret of the fact that it wants to transform Messenger into a full-fledged platform where it’s possible for companies to provide customer service and airlines to provide boarding passes. Messenger started off as a way to keep in touch with your Facebook friends but it’s so much more than that now and the transformation has only just begun. The company just launched a bot platform for Facebook Messenger.
At its F8 developer conference today, Facebook announced a bot platform for Messenger, developers will be provided tools which they can use to build bots inside Messenger. This will bring a wide variety of new functionality to Messenger. For example, bots will be used to provide customer service inside Messenger, and also for e-commerce solutions, content, and interactive experiences. The possibilities are endless.
Facebook’s bot platform will also be open to media which will allow publishers to message their subscribers directly with news that they care about. Bots from 1-800-Flowers and CNN were demonstrated by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg during the conference today. It showed just how easy it was to order flowers using conversational language with a bot on the other end. “You never have to call 1-800-FLOWERS again,” Zuckerberg said.
Messenger has more than 900 million active users which means that when bots arrive, it will be the first time that millions of people encounter bots for the very first time, whether or not they will adopt them is a completely different matter but Facebook appears to think they will which is why it’s pushing ahead with this agenda.