Since separating from its main application in April, Facebook’s Messenger has been updated with new cool features that included video calling, a payments service and, perhaps, the capability to play games within the messenger. But the world’s number one social network isn’t resting on its laurels yet.
The company is reportedly planning to add an interesting feature on its popular messaging app: virtual assistants. But unlike Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Google Now, Facebook’s virtual assistant will be an actual human being. Well, not just one, but lots of well-trained people to help users discover and buy products and services.
The report comes from The Information, a technology website with a paywall. According to Amir Efrati, Facebook’s unique project is currently named “Moneypenny,” a moniker inspired by Miss Moneypenny M’s assistant who appeared in a few James Bond books and movies. Sources with knowledge of Facebook’s plans said that Facebook is currently testing the feature internally and that its name could eventually change.
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Moneypenny, sources added, will connect users to real people who will help them in researching and ordering products and services. If this sounds familiar to you, that’s because the concept is also used by Magic, Operator, and other human-operated virtual assistant applications. Meanwhile, Facebook didn’t comment on the report.