Chinese smartphone maker
OnePlus has partnered with Gupshup, a Silicon Valley-based smart messaging platform, to develop advanced artificial intelligence-powered features that take the traditional SMS messaging experience to the next level on OnePlus smartphones.
The company has launched its OnePlus 7T series smartphones, OnePlus 7T and OnePlus 7T Pro, alongside its first-ever TV on September 26.
Gupshup's Smart SMS uses on-device AI to understand and classify enterprise messages that we all get into eight different categories including OTP, banking, e-commerce, travel and coupons. It then identifies the key attributes of the message, for example in case of OTP -- the OTP number, merchant and amount or due date, and creates a structured visual card which makes it easy for the user to view the important information upfront.
Gupshup was co-founded by Beerud Sheth in 2004. It is a messaging services company with primary operations in India, the US and the UK.
CNBCTV18.com caught up with Beerud Sheth, co-founder and CEO of GupShup to understand the nuances of Smart SMS and how it uses AI features to change the messaging experience. Tell us about Gupshup. What inspired you to come up with an intelligent enterprise messaging company?
In the early days of the mobile revolution, we realised that SMS messaging was the ONLY way to reach billions of users worldwide. We also realised that businesses will need this capability to communicate and connect with their consumers. So, we built an enterprise messaging platform. However, the overwhelming adoption by enterprises led to overload and clutter. Therefore, we're now using AI software to make messaging smarter and simpler, to take the mess out of messaging.
Can you take us through Gupshup's Smart SMS app and how it is disruptive when it comes to messaging?
There has been little innovation in mobile messaging for the last 25 years. It's the same chronological list of plain-text messages. For the first time, there is intelligence in the app that automatically classifies and visualises messages. It's like having a personal assistant that sorts through your mail and highlights important stuff. This is the first such application of AI to enhance messaging anywhere in the world.
How is artificial intelligence involved in the Smart SMS app? How do you see current AI systems evolving in future?
We've trained the AI software to recognise patterns in messaging. Based on the content in the message, the AI software classifies messages into categories (e.g. banking, travel, e-commerce and entertainment). Then, it extracts the key entities (e.g. flight number, PNR number, from-city and to-city) from the message. Lastly, it renders the information as a structured card rather than a blob of plain text.
Could you shed some light on the launch of on-device default app on OnePlus 7T and your partnership with the company?
The AI software has to be embedded in the default messaging app, which is owned by the mobile handset manufacturer. OnePlus, the leading premium smartphone brand, is focused on bringing the best technology to its users. Together, Gupshup's AI software is embedded into OnePlus' default messaging app -- this brings the revolutionary capability to OnePlus mobile users.
How do you see WhatsApp for Business in the context of
Messaging is a huge space and every messaging channel has its unique advantages. Whatsapp for Business is finding great adoption for customer support and other new kinds of use cases. The Gupshup-Oneplus partnership is focused on enhancing the default messaging inbox which already receives a huge volume of enterprise messages such as alerts and notifications.
For too long, the enterprise messaging has been limited by 160-character plain-text messages. The emergence of OTT apps for business messaging is enabling new use cases which were not possible before. And the Gupshup-OnePlus partnership is enhancing the existing dominant channel. Both scenarios will lead to new capabilities and richer experiences for consumers and enterprises. It's an exciting time in the messaging space.
Can you tell us about Gupshup's enterprise messaging business and how it is evolving in the world of OTT messaging apps like WhatsApp?