Vonage is expanding its Tel Aviv-based R&D team to more than 100, and its AI capabilities, through a deal involving none other than musician will.i.am.
On Tuesday, the Holmdel-based global, business cloud communications company announced it acquired a 23-person product and engineering team from Over.ai and intellectual property from i.am+, expanding Vonage’s conversational-related AI competence.
i.am+ was co-founded and co-owned by will.i.am of The Black Eyed Peas. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The Voice and Conversational AI platform from Over.ai provides businesses with improved interactive voice response (IVR) through APIs (application programming interface) functioning as virtual assistants, the ability to endure phone-based “real-time human-like interactions,” and lower operating costs, Vonage said.
“At Over.ai, our technology was built on the belief that in order for organizations to meet the digital age with intelligence, humans and machines must learn to work together,” said Noam Fine, co-founder and chief executive officer of Over.ai. “We are excited to join Vonage at such an exciting time as they are disrupting the massive cloud communications market. Combining our AI technology with the award-winning OneVonage platform presents a tremendous opportunity to create new, amazing customer experiences.”
The integration of Over.ai VoAI (Voice over AI), which features proprietary speech-to-text and Natural Language Understanding algorithms, will allow Vonage to expand its facility in voice through the bolstering of applications like its Business Cloud’s communications solution and New VoiceMedia contact center solutions – providing businesses with automated voice capabilities, and human support, to deliver service to customers.
The company said the deal will also accelerate the depth and abilities of Nexmo, its API platform.
“As a communications market leader, we believe we are best positioned and set on a mission to lead the revolution from Voice over IP to Voice over AI. With the Over.ai talent and technology on board, we intend to make every conversation smarter,” said Omar Javaid, president of Vonage’s API Platform Group.
“Leveraging these capabilities into our solutions will empower Vonage to drive exceptional customer experiences by providing a premiere service for every interaction; reducing wait times to zero, and resolving customer issues quickly and effectively using natural language conversation,” he added.