Iris: The Future of Conversational AI

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Proxima.io is a platform that brands, developers, and agencies can build conversational experiences for Twitter and Facebook. It’s currently in beta, but companies such as Jack in the BoxMTVSamsung, and even Twitter have already created campaigns incorporating bots built with Iris.

Iris is the Conversational AI part of Proxima. This is where conversational experiences are created. It’s pretty easy to use as it’s one of few platforms that lets a user build with Entry Points, Conversation Nodes, Decision Points and advanced settings. It’s essentially a drag and drop experience — Up to a certain point.

I had a call with Sebastian Pedavoli, Co-founder of Proxima who gave me a bit of a behind-the-scenes tour of Iris as well as a few bots that have been built with Iris. Some were relatively simple, and some were very intricate. Sebastian provided A LOT of technical information that pretty much explained how you could literally build anything with Iris.

Here is a sample of what Iris is capable of — Courtesy of Sebastian.

“When Iris opens up for developers, conversational UI designers and agencies, there will be the ability to build custom actions on top of Iris and package up these actions. Developing these functions will be written directly into the AI and executed when it’s running and people are conversing with it. This will give people the ability to build against any API or webhook service, save data, manipulate it and use it in conversations with people. Essentially no limit to what can be designed and developed on top of Iris, going well beyond what we’re currently seeing from the ‘chatbot’ space. This is where multi-threaded intent, true cross-medium (text, voice, image) conversational AI will come from.”

As you can tell, Iris is full of unique capabilities. This platform is perfect for a business, brand or even an individual who wants to build a simple or complex conversational experience. It’s as easy as 1–2–3 to add a social account to the platform and connect it to your bot.

When it comes to dialogues, the Iris Platform provides a launchpad which makes it easy to execute several actions such as Edit, Promote to Testing, Promote Live or connect an account to the bot. There are also three stages to ensure that your bot has been thoroughly tested.

DESIGN - The first stage. This is where you design all of your conversations. It’s where you build your bot.

TEST - The second stage. This is where you can connect your bot to a private test account and make sure that your bot is fully functional from the inside-out.

LIVE - The third stage. This is where you promote your bot when you want to make it live to your customers. Connect it to the main account where you would like your customers to engage with it.

Proxima also runs their pricing a little differently than other platforms. Typically you’d charge per monthly users your bot has or # of message exchanges, but Proxima charges by scenario. As I quote Sebastian, “The logic we used basing the pricing around this, if you want to make your bot more useful and do more for customers and users, you need more scenarios. Thus the more there is, the more valuable the bot is to the business”.

  Starter  = $0/month ; Team  = $50/month ; Business  = $500/month

Starter = $0/month; Team = $50/month; Business = $500/month

If a company plans to run their bot on multiple platforms, most likely Facebook Messenger and Twitter DM, Iris gives the ability to connect a bot to two messenger accounts and five Twitter accounts at the same time.

Iris also has some more advanced DM features that most other platforms do not have yet. Of course the standard Quick Replies and Deeplinks but in addition, you can incorporate Buttons, Custom Profiles, DM Cards, and more! If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, see a few images below 👇

 Direct Message Card

Direct Message Card

 Buttons

Buttons

 Quick Replies

Quick Replies

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That just about does it for my take on Iris. The people behind all of this seem to really know what they are doing. They’re all very friendly people and you can rely on them to do what they say, which is rare these days. Just remember that Iris is in its beta stages. It will be opening up its doors to new customers in the coming months. Iris can leverage the newest of the Twitter APIs like DM Cards which adds another level to experiences and when made generally available by Twitter, will be automatically created by Iris. This platform will continuously be improved to keep up to date with new features from social platforms, so expect there always to be more.