During its keynote address at the Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple detailed all the major changes coming to iOS on stage. The Cupertino giant talked about improvements to iMessage, its native messaging client, but forgot to mention an interesting new and useful feature that’s making its way to the same — Business Chat.
While the said feature hasn’t been official talked about on stage at WWDC as of yet but The Verge has spotted that a developer page for the same has already gone live. It provides us insight into the Business Chat feature, which aims to provide iOS users with a new direct medium to connect with businesses — mostly for customer service purposes.
Soon, you may no longer require Messenger or Twitter to get in touch with your favorite brands and service providers. iMessage is going to become you integrated playground that’ll provide you access to customer support, app integrations, and other interesting features to keep conversations lively. You will be able to search for businesses through Siri, Spotlight, Safari, or Maps, an example of which has been shown in the image attached above.
Business Chat, which isn’t cross-platform, will now compete against customer support services rendered by brands on other social platforms. Twitter and Facebook have already adopted a similar path and debuted customer support services via their messaging platforms. While the latter enables you to also assign AI chatbots, the former has recently started offering such services — either automated or manual — through the Direct Messaging (DM) service on its micro-blogging platform.
The new ‘Business Chat’ feature coming to iMessage with the iOS 11 software update has been described by Apple on the developer website as under:
Business Chat is a powerful new way for businesses to connect with customers directly from within Messages.
Using Business Chat, your customers can get answers to questions, resolve issues and complete transactions on their iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. Customers can find your business and start conversations from Safari, Maps, Spotlight, and Siri.
Apple didn’t talk about the said feature when discussing the new feature set for the next iteration of its mobile operating system but is expected to discuss the same in-depth later this week. An ‘Introducing Business Chat‘ session has been scheduled for June 9th at 10:00 AM PT/ 1:00 PM ET.