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Starbucks now has a virtual assistant of its own for some reason

3D on TVs? 3D screens on phones? Curved screens on TVs? All of those should move over, for the latest fad to take over anything even remotely tech-related is all about virtual assistants. Oh, and excessive use of the “AI” acronym of course.

Does it already feel like there are way too many “AI-powered” virtual assistants out there (and none are very good)? Well, then, brace yourselves, for 2017 is shaping up to be all about more, yes even more of these (and killing bezels, but that’s another subject).

The latest company to get in on the assistant action? Starbucks. Yes, the newest virtual assistant comes from Starbucks – not even a tech company. It’s called “My Starbucks barista”, and, get ready for this, “is powered by groundbreaking Artificial Intelligence (AI) for the Starbucks Mobile App”.

So what can you do with this incredibly amazing virtual assistant? Order coffee, of course. Oh, and get this, you can do it by voice too, “just as if” you were talking to an actual barista in a Starbucks location. Yeah, that’s why it’s called Barista, in a shocking twist. You can modify your beverage order to meet your personal preference when using the assistant.

All of this “groundbreaking” stuff is headed to a grand total of “one thousand customers nationwide” (seriously), who are using the Starbucks app for iOS. More people will get access to the virtual assistant in stages, as the company is planning a “continued phased rollout through summer 2017”. Android support is going to follow “later this year”.

Starbucks is also announcing a “Reorder” skill for Amazon’s Alexa, which lets you order your usual beverage items by simply saying “Alexa, order my Starbucks”. Like to switch things up and don’t always go for the exact same item when you hit a Starbucks? Well, then this is apparently not for you.

Source | Via