Microsoft Corp. announced that it has acquired Genee, Inc., a company that utilizes natural language processing and decision-making algorithms to assist users in setting up meetings painlessly. Financial terms of the acquisition was not disclosed.
In a the blog post announcing the acquisition, Rajesh Jha, Corporate Vice President of Outlook and Office 365, explained how Genee works. Say, for example, you want to meet with a potential client, Diana. You send an email and copy Genee, just like you would a personal assistant. Genee will understand that you want to set up a meeting with Diana, so it will be the one to email her directly with options based on your schedule and preferences. Genee sends out meeting invites, allowing users to set up meetings in a snap. A similar perhaps more widely known startup in this space is x.ai.
Possible Office 365 enhancement
It is not clear as to how Genee will be integrated into Microsoft’s products, but it is likely to become a part of the Office 365 ecosystem. According to Jha, he is “confident the Genee team will help us further our ambition to bring intelligence into every digital experience,” as the company continues to build new Office 365 productivity capabilities and services for its customers.
In a separate blog post, founders Ben Cheung and Charles Lee announced that Genee’s operations will shut down on September 1, 2016. The founders will also be joining the Microsoft team. The post explained that though Genee will no longer send useful reminders and agendas from the user’s calendar, all existing entries created by Genee will remain.
The founders also stated that the culmination of their work has delivered the company into the forefront of technology involving natural language processing, artificial intelligence, and chat bots. “We consider Microsoft to be the leader in personal and enterprise productivity, AI, and virtual assistant technologies, so we look forward to bringing our passion and expertise to a team that is committed to delivering cutting-edge language and intelligence services,” the founders stated on the post.
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