European mobile networks Orange SA and Deutsche Telekom AG are teaming up to build an artificial intelligence platform, in a bid to catch up with Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Amazon.com Inc.Djingo, a virtual assistant in that responds to voice and text, was 1st demoed by Orange’s Chief Executive Officer Stephane Richard Thursday in the form of a donut-shaped speaker. At a concert place in Paris, Richard showed the system taking orders such as playing music or publishing a tweet. The- service, still under development, will be made available on various devices through software applications made by Orange, he said.Stephane Richard on April, 20.Photographer: Eric Piermont/AFP via Getty Images”Djingo is an erudite,” Richard said. “We put all our arithmetic and artificial intelligence know-how in to it.”Users can interact with the AI –using the command “OK Djingo”– by talking in to the speaker, in to a microphone-equipped TV remote control similar to Amazon Fire, or typing in to an app on a phone.Artificial intelligence is the newest battlefield for carriers trying to grab back a piece of the pie from internet giants in that threaten to turn operators’ business in to just running commodity networks. Although the market for AI is cluttered, carriers have a long way to go to catch up with virtual assistants like Google’s “OK Google” command, Apple Inc.’s Siri or Microsoft Corp.’s Cortana on phones, or Amazon’s Echo speaker for the living room.Other offerings from Orange involving artificial intelligence will be developed with Deutsche Telekom as part of a partnership, Richard said. He moreover showed a challenger to Amazon’s Dash button — still in development, Orange’s Livebutton can do up to four actions, in addition to ordering something online and sending a programmed text message.For customer service in Orange’s new banking business though, the company is turning to IBM’s Watson for a robot in that answers client questions and becomes smarter as it learns their needs and specifics.
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