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Microsoft acquires AI-powered scheduling service Genee, to be shut down and merged with Office 365

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Microsoft stamps its name onto yet another artificial intelligence-based company. This time, its an artificial intelligence-powered scheduling service called Genee. The Redmond giant says that Genee will be shut down on September 1 and go on to be a part of Office 365 in the near future.

Founded by Ben Cheung and Charles Lee in 2014, Genee’s primary aim was to simplify the scheduling and rescheduling of meetings. The service was more specifically aimed at larger groups and situations where you didn’t have access to someone’s calendar.

Scheduling with Genee was very simple — you just had to email the attendees of your meeting, carbon copy “[email protected],” and describe your meeting (tell Genee your meeting type and the general timing). The AI-powered service would take care of the rest with its powerful natural language processing and optimized decision-making algorithms.

Genee mainly works via email, but is also integrated with an iOS app, SMS, Facebook Messenger, Twitter DMs and Skype chat.

All these features will now be implemented into Office 365 in the coming months.

Following the deal, co-Founders Ben Cheung and Charles Lee plan to join Microsoft, where they will work closely with Microsoft’s tech experts aiming to build amazing next-generation intelligent experiences. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Explaining how Genee could help save a lot of time, Microsoft Corporate Vice President, Outlook and Office 365, Rajesh Jha writes:

Say you want to meet a potential customer, Diana, for coffee. Simply send an email to Diana and copy Genee, like you would a personal assistant. Genee understands that you want to “Find a time to meet with Diana for coffee next week” and will streamline the process by emailing her directly with appropriate options that work with your calendar and preferences. Genee will even send out the meeting invite on your behalf — freeing up your time.

A coffee meeting scheduled in a snap!

While all that is great, the biggest shock is that Microsoft is giving existing users of Genee just 10 days to get used to normal life. The service will blackout as soon as this month ends, on September 1st.


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