Friday, 23 February, 2018

Reply wants to add Smart Replies to all your messaging apps

Google Reply Android Police Google's Area 120
Troy Mann | 14 February, 2018, 18:32

Google is working on an AI-based auto-reply system to do just that.

Screenshots delivered to beta testers show Reply working on apps such as Google's own messaging client Hangouts and Android Messages.

In an email test sent to potential testers, published by Android Police, a spokesman for the team said: 'You probably get a lot of chat messages.

Beyond the aforementioned, Reply will include a myriad of automated features.

Now you might be thinking how that AI-based system will reply to the messages received from the second person. Here, it offers Smart Replies to your notification and gives responses to questions like "When can you be home?" or "Are you at the restaurant?" A few other apps have implemented it as well, like Android Messages, but usually not in notifications. It seems as though Reply is able to do this by recognizing the user's current location. Reply will make sure to get the user's attention even when their phone is in silent mode.

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There would also be a vacation responder that would automatically reply while you are in an area without cell service for an extended period.

This is not the first time for Google to have this kind of feature, Project Fi users already have this app on Android Messaging but this time you have one-tap replies feature in Whatsapp, Messenger, Skype, Facebook and even Twitter's direct messages. But the feature has not been made available to all Android Messages users as of yet. There's also an automated Vacation Responder that is able to check the user's calendar and tell people that the user is now not at work. Smart replies are now used in Gmail and other Google communication options, allowing business professionals to quickly respond to simple messages.

The project, like all Area 120 projects, is unrelated to any broader developments at Google - in this case, that means it's not directly tied to Google's messaging efforts.

Google's Smart Reply, introduced in 2016, uses the firm's neural network to intelligently analyse a message's content to suggest an appropriate response.

If you're interested in testing out Reply and other applications from Area 120 in the future, your best bet is to sign up to join the incubator's Early Access Program.

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