Sabre Creates an AI-powered Chatbot Using Microsoft’s Intelligent and Natural Language Services

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Sabre Creates an AI-powered Chatbot Using Microsoft’s Intelligent and Natural Language Services

07/13/2017
Sabre Corporation, a technology provider to the global travel industry, announced the development of an AI-powered chatbot that leverages Microsoft Bot Framework and Microsoft Cognitive Services, a set of tools that organizations can use to add intelligent and conversational features to their applications. Sabre will initially test the chatbot with two travel agencies and the travelers they serve.
 
In developing the chatbot, Sabre is leveraging Microsoft Bot Framework and a selection of Microsoft Cognitive Services, including Language Understanding Intelligent Service (LUIS).
 
One of the key challenges in human-computer interactions is the ability of computers to understand what people want and find relevant information that connects to their intent. Travel applications must recognize a plethora of unique terms and phrases, which adds complexity for industry applications. LUIS provides simple tools to build language models that allow any application or bot to understand commands and act accordingly.
 
Two Sabre-connected travel agencies – Dallas-based Travel Solutions International USA and San Francisco-based Casto Travel – will test a white-label version of the chatbot with travelers, who will access the chatbot via Facebook Messenger. Travelers will use the chatbot for common service and support requests, such as changing an existing flight reservation. The chatbot will divert to a live travel agent if it is unable to fulfill a request.
 
Throughout the test, Sabre and its partner travel agencies will evaluate travelers’ preferences for how often and when they engage the chatbot and when they are likely to divert to a live agent.  The companies expect to gain a better understanding of the best way to engage travelers with chatbots and solve for some of the most common hurdles that many industries face when it comes to chatbots.
 
This is not Sabre’s first foray into chatbots. Sabre Hospitality Solutions is building a chatbot prototype that would allow travelers to shop, book and engage with hoteliers through the most common messaging platforms, such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Twitter and SMS text messaging, as well as voice assistants, such as Amazon's Echo (Alexa), Microsoft's Cortana, and Google Home. When ready, the company expects to test the prototype with some of its hotel customers.