After acquiring Apigee
–a developer and provider of application programming interface (API) technology—for $625 million (approximately), earlier this month, Google is back in news confirming the buyout of Api.ai a natural language processing platform
. The announcement
was made public by Scott Huffman, Vice President, Engineering, Google, in a company blogpost. However the terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.
Huffman said, “We have been investing in the core machine learning technologies that enable natural language interfaces for years. To continue that investment, we’re excited to welcome API.AI to Google.”
“API.AI has a proven track record for helping developers design, build and continuously improve their conversational interfaces,” he added.
Sunnyvale-based Api.ai that offers tools for speech recognition and natural language understanding has reportedly helped over 60,000 developers build conversational experiences (read chatbots) integrated
with messaging, virtual assistant and IoT platforms such as Slack, Facebook Messenger, Skype Kik, Amazon Alexa and Microsoft Cortana amongst others. The merger between both, will potentially position Google to enable developers in building natural language interfaces.
Api.ai was launched in the year 2014 and currently allows natural language processing in 15 languages including English, Chinese, French, German and Spanish. While enterprises can bank on the tech behind text recognition, they could also leverage its conversation management platform to transform customer experiences and streamline business processes. It can also be used to create conversational interfaces for connected cars, smart home devices, mobile applications, wearables, services and robots, claims the company.
In another blogpost
, Ilya Gelfenbeyn, CEO, Api.ai, stated:
“Our vision has been to make technology understand and speak human language, and help developers build truly intelligent conversational interfaces for their products and services.”
“Joining Google will allow us to accelerate improvements to the platform and service our growing developer community in ways we’ve always dreamed. With Google’s knowledge, infrastructure and support, we can make sure you get access to the best available technologies and developments in AI and machine learning,” Gelfenbeyn added.
Earlier in July, Google had announced
the beta launch of two machine learning APIs; Cloud Natural Language and Cloud Speech to allow developers the access to Google-powered syntax and sentiment analysis, entity recognition and text analysis.