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Facebook Testing Its Own Virtual Assistant ‘Moneypenny’ For Messenger

Facebook is reportedly testing a personal assistant service built into its Messenger app and referred to internally as “Moneypenny” — the name of the secretary from the James Bond franchise. According to a report from The Information, Moneypenny is not a virtual entity in the vein of Microsoft’s Cortana or Apple’s Siri, but a service that connects users to “real people” to help with “researching and ordering products and services, among other tasks.” No other details about Moneypenny and its launch have been revealed yet. However, the virtual assistant is said to be different from Siri, Google Now and Cortana as which focuses more on productivity.

Facebook is reportedly building a virtual assistant to make your purchases:

This description suggests that Moneypenny is closer to a traditional concierge system than the recent breed of digital personal assistants. Click here A number of companies have targeted this space recently including Magic, a US startup that puts users in touch with “trained operators” via text message, allowing them to order anything from takeaway to flights at any hour of the day.

Other rivals include Operator (a project run by an Uber co-founder and a former Zynga executive) and GoButler (a clone of Magic with international reach).

The company has been developing Messenger into a fully-fledged platform to rival Asian services like WeChat and LINE, apps that combine commerce and gaming with chatting.

Facebook is striving hard to increase the popularity of Messenger:

No other details about Moneypenny have been revealed yet. It will be interesting to see how Facebook integrates this with its website and app, considering that the virtual assistants by Apple, Microsoft and Google are integrated into the OS as a whole.

Earlier this month, Messenger officially started its mobile payment service for users in the US. Facebook is striving hard to increase the popularity of Messenger by adding new features. It is also testing GIF image support and Sticker search for Messenger.