How NLI is helping turn the world of personal assistants

Remember the relief when the ‘all in one remote’ replaced the numerous controllers for the TV, the video and the stereo, and if you were really up with entertainment technology, an AV amp? Well we’re reaching that impasse again now, but it’s ten times worse.

We all have too many devices, providing disparate information, in our lives. So many in fact that we rarely manage to access all of their features and services and typically just stick to the ones we know. A bit like the washing machine – 20 programs to choose from, but most of us just use the same two cycles and the occasional wool wash.

Many device and appliance manufacturers have tried to make life easier for users by introducing apps that connect with one or two different devices or appliances to give users a certain amount of flexible control over how they receive information and when. But no one has quite reached that ‘all in one remote’ nirvana.

But what if you had just one app that you could converse with naturally, that would understand your needs and wishes and that eliminated the need for you to know intricacies of features and services, and just carried out that request.

At Artificial Solutions we believe that the personal assistant app has the potential to integrate all aspects of technology seamlessly into a user’s everyday life. And unlike a real personal assistant, they would be available twenty four hours a day, wherever you are.

NLI, our natural language app and the Teneo platform are our starting point to achieve this vision and whilst it is obvious that others such as Google and Apple see this overall vision too, it is also likely that we will take different paths to get there. But there are core areas that will be similar.

Advancements in speech recognition and contextual understanding will continue to be embraced by personal assistants. In addition, offering other forms of input such as text or gestures must also be included for moments when speech is not appropriate.

The personal assistant needs to work across all of a user’s devices. The smartphone might be able to replace ‘all in one remote’, but users need to be able to access their personal assistant whatever they are doing for it to be a truly useful tool.

Whether that’s having the baseball game you’ve been asking about on the way home ready for you to watch the moment you walk through the front door or simply asking the TV to update your Facebook status, the future of virtual assistants relies on their availability to interact with all digital aspects of our lives.

With NLI and our natural language app’s persistence capabilities that already allow users to continue conversations across devices the reality of our vision is close. In the meantime you’ll be pleased to know that we’re doing what we can to make your digital overload a little easier.

Amongst the new features in the next release of our natural language app will be the ability to pre-set the information you want our natural language app to wake you up with in the morning. Whether it’s the latest share price, the weather forecast or who won the game last night or all three is up to you. It’s your personal assistant after all.


Andy, who lives with his family in the UK, is Chief Marketing & Strategy Officer at Artificial Solutions. A regular speaker at industry conferences and events, Andy delivers insight on the rise of AI, the challenges businesses face and the future of intelligent conversational applications.

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