It’s all happening at once: chat bots, chat bots, and more chat bots. Now that Facebook is going to add bots to Messenger, there’s no turning back. We’ll buy flowers with bots, we’ll order car service with bots, we’ll plan vacations with bots. We’ll engage with more brands, more effectively, all with bots.
Just so there’s no misunderstanding, this early wave of “bots” will have very little to do with complex artificial intelligence. They’re really just a form of user interface. They’re an app that “talks” to you, as opposed to other apps where you push buttons and select things from lists. Microsoft and Facebook are working on more advanced AI that will give bots a little more personality, and a little more comprehension. But they’ll be pretty dumb for a while.