Facebook is entering the personal assistant market, with the launch of its own assistant inside the Messenger platform. The assistant, named M, will be able to take messages and serve up relevant results in real-time.
It is a major move against Microsoft’s Cortana and Apple’s Siri, both offer a larger assistant package which covers all types of virtual needs.
The social network is banking on an easy to understand formula to win over users. M will be able to offer up search results, including purchases inside of Facebook. It also plans to be there after a conversation with a friend to offer the right information at the right time.
This is a big power play by Facebook, the company has been working on artificial intelligence for a few years now. M might be moved into an even more prominent role in the future, similar to Cortana’s integration with Android and Google Now with iOS.
For now, Facebook is a bit stuck on the information front. It will not take information from any sources outside of the social network, meaning search results, Amazon, YouTube and other areas will not be picked for potential brain fodder for the AI.
That said, a lot of things are passed between friends on Facebook Messenger. We assume M is going to be more reactive to questions rather than actively promoting products that you spoke about, but the latter could happen in the future.
Facebook M is available today on the Messenger mobile platform.