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Amazon enters chatbot arena with new shopping tool

Amazon enters chatbot arena with new shopping tool

Amazon entered the consumer chatbot arena on Thursday, announcing a new artificial intelligence personal shopping assistant, as the company races to compete with other tech giants.

Customers can ask the tool, Rufus, product-related questions directly in the search bar of the company's mobile app, Amazon said in a blog post. After this the AI ​​will respond in a conversational tone. Examples given in the announcement included a comparison of different types of coffee makers, recommendations for gifts, and follow-up questions about the durability of running shoes.

Rufus will be available to “a small subset of customers” starting Thursday, according to the post, and will be rolled out to additional customers in the coming weeks. Amazon declined to provide further details about how many people will be part of the initial release of the tool.

Amazon is trying to break the perception that it is lagging behind the wave of AI that arrived more than a year ago, when start-up OpenAI released its ChatGPAT chatbot.

Microsoft and Google released chatbots and AI tools for their search engines last spring, often highlighting shopping-related uses, and startups like Perplexity are trying to redesign the search experience with AI in mind. have tried.

In the fall, Amazon released a corporate chatbot called Q for customers of its cloud computing division, and the company said it was working to make its Alexa voice assistant more conversational.

The Amazon search bar and the top results it produces are some of the most important placements in online retail. They have been the subject of antitrust inquiries, and product advertisements in search results are the foundation of the company's rapidly growing advertising business.

The new Rufus tool is “trained on information from Amazon's extensive product catalog, customer reviews, community questions and answers, and information from across the web,” the company said.

Amazon allows its employees to bring their dogs to work, and a dog named rufus He was one of the first people to visit the company's offices in its early days.

The company is scheduled to release fourth quarter financial results on Thursday.

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