The future of the web is around the corner – and advertising is disrupted again
Chatbots seem like a new fad in software design: Microsoft just announced its own suite of bot-building tools; Kik, the messaging platform massively popular among teens, announced one as well. But there are deep reasons why chatbots make sense. The app model has stalled out: People don’t use a ton of apps, and they don’t download many either. The reason is simple: There’s an enormous amount of friction associated with learning about a new app, downloading it, signing up for it, and then remembering you even have it.
The promise of chatbots is that from within Facebook Messenger you can do anything you’d like. For example, you can book an airline ticket for the the first time or call an Uber, with a speed and ease that would be impossible if you were toggling between apps. Moreover, because you’re already in Messenger, there’s no need to sign up all over again if you’re trying out a new service. Messenger already knows who you are, and once you start a conversational thread, your transaction history is right there, threaded into one neat, tidy stream of conversation that you and the bot can access. “We have a two-sided network,” explains Marcus. “There are 15 million businesses using pages and 1.6 billion people using Facebook as their identity. These can now come together in threads that are contextual and canonical. For the lifetime of your interaction everything stays in one place, unlike email.” And, unlike email, your Facebook profile becomes the keystone of your online identity.”…more…