Auckland based Soul Machines, which has produced a digital created human face able to speak text with intonation and facial expressions, has signed European car maker Daimler as its latest customer.
Daimler Financial Services is using a Soul Machines avatar dubbed Sarah to provide personalised assistance to customers of the company’s services, including car financing, leasing and insurance.
Soul Machines and Daimler are demonstrating Sarah at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
It is the latest in a string of adoptions for the Auckland company’s technology. A week ago the Soul Machines — a spinout from the University of Auckland Bioengineering Institute —announced that UK bank NatWest was trialling its technology to answer customer queries.
In November 2017 Soul Machines, announced that it was developing digital human interface for Autodesk’s customer assistance chatbot, the Autodesk Virtual Agent, AVA.
That followed Soul Machines’ announcement in March 2017 that it had developed a similar avatar for the Australian National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Soul Machines says all these applications are built on top of IBM Watson to “provide a customer experience that goes way beyond the traditional AI user interface of chatbots and voice assistants.”
According to Soul Machines Sarah combines artificial and emotional intelligence for “a completely new experience that redefines the link between man and machine.”
It claims “Sarah will be able to assist customers similar to a personal concierge, with the goal of offering the right information at the right time with a convenient and emotionally intelligent, digital touchpoint.”
In future, Soul Machines says Sarah will be able to recognise non-verbal behaviour in real time using face recognition based on its technology.