Capita launches Avatar web chat technology
Capita today launches Avatar, a new technology that uses 3D digital characters to make the customer service experience more human.
As customers look to self-service channels, as well as for choice and convenience when it comes to how they interact with companies, the use of ‘chat’ has become an increasingly popular option. Research carried out by the marketing and digital services agency, 99firms, found that live chat is the number one service choice for shoppers between 18 and 49 years old, and that by 2022, 85% of businesses are expected to offer live chat support to customers.
Until now, when a customer interacts with a chat bot online, it’s through automated messages, an often impersonal and sometimes unempathetic and frustrating experience.
Capita has partnered with Rapport to develop 3D avatars to replace this type of interaction, instead offering the customer a digital character to engage with, empowering customers to connect more authentically with their audiences.
The avatars are bought to life, using Capita’s Conversation AI technology AMI, and can show emotion and empathy through facial expressions and speech, powered by Rapport’s audio driven speech animation technology. They can react to sentiment of the customer, offering a more meaningful interaction.
Alan Linter, Capita’s Director of Innovation, said: “The launch of avatars marks the next evolution of the traditional web chat function. The way the 3D digital characters can display emotion, through facial expression and speech, is designed to make customers feel they are being listened to and understood. This technology not only improves the customer experience, but also allows businesses to differentiate themselves when it comes to customer service.”
Gregor Hofer, Rapport CEO, said: "We are excited to partner with Capita, taking advantage of their reputation and capabilities to help bring the Rapport platform to market. This partnership gives current and potential clients the best of both worlds: tried and trusted implementation combined with innovative, cutting-edge technology."
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Capita is a consulting, transformation and digital services business. Every day our 55,000 colleagues help millions of people, by delivering innovative solutions to transform and simplify the connections between government and citizens, businesses and customers. We partner with our clients and provide the insight and cutting-edge technologies that give time back, allowing them to focus on what they do best, and making people’s lives easier and simpler. We operate across three divisions – Capita Public Service, Capita Experience and Capita Portfolio – in the UK, Europe, India and South Africa. Further information can be found at: http://www.capita.com
Rapport is an audio-driven facial animation technology company powered by our award-winning Speech Graphics engine. Our core technology is based on 10+ years of scientific research in linguistics, biomechanics, psychology, machine learning, and computer graphics. Our real-time Rapport platform is currently in early access with a goal of creating more natural interactions between people and machines. With offices in Edinburgh, San Francisco, and Budapest, Rapport is a trusted global partner in audio-driven facial animation used by 90% of today’s AAA gaming studios.