Facebook Launches Its Own Virtual Assistant Called “M”
In a short post on his Facebook page, David Marcus formally announced M, the social networking site’s personal assistant that is integrated in to the Facebook Messenger app.
Like Siri and Cortana, the whole idea behind M is to help users with some of the tasks that they would otherwise do themselves. These include finding a great place to eat in a particular area, provide contextual suggestions based on the questions you asked it, and even book you a reservation to a restaurant or hotel of your choice.
What sets M apart though from other virtual assistants is that it doesn’t respond purely based on artificial intelligence, there’s a human element behind it. Called M Trainers, these people supplements what Facebook M could do and provide solutions to queries that are beyond the virtual assistant’s limitations.
Marcus believes that the M will eventually be able to do it on its own, without the need for an M Trainer. But for now, these M Trainers will play a big role in making sure that the newly-launched virtual assistant is on solid footing to compete with similar services like Siri, Google Now and Cortana.
Facebook M is currently on beta stage and is currently being tested by hundreds of users in San Francisco. The official date of when it will be rolled out to all Facebook users was not mentioned during the announcement, but once it becomes available, it will be free to use.