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Sparkle chatbot helps shoppers

Customers of mall group CapitaLand can now access a range of concierge services by simply speaking via app with the new Sparkle chatbot.

The virtual concierge has been developed by PowerUpCloud Technologies in a partnership with US software giant Microsoft. Through the artificial-intelligence platform, customers can hail taxis, book restaurants and browse retailer offerings via the CapitaStar app, with the update now available for Android and iOS users. CapitaStar is CapitaLand’s customer rewards program.

“Sparkle is a milestone for our team as the bot had to pick up more than 2500 nouns unique to CapitaLand, while ensuring its responses to end users made sense,” says PowerUpCloud Technologies founder/CEO Siva. “We were able to deliver this highly intuitive solution within three months.”

He says CapitaLand’s goal is to transform the retail journey through “conversational commerce”.

Sparkle is designed to decipher localised linguistic cues while understanding and remembering context. The engine also learns automatically through intelligent feedback algorithms, making conversations smarter along the way.

“With the launch of Sparkle, we are leading the way into the next era of consumerism, defined by convergent offline-and-online (O&O) experiences,” says CapitaLand president/group CEO Lim Ming Yan. “This is a first for an Asian real-estate developer.”

Sparkle can deliver information about the group’s malls in Singapore, provide directions to the malls, book transport, answer questions about individual stores, make restaurant reservations and view new products.

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