Facebook’s killing its digital assistant M later this month

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We’re quite used to writing about Facebook’s new products or tweaks to its existing lineup of offerings. But this week, the company dropped news that M — it’s artificial intelligence service — will be terminated.

“Today we shared with the people who have access to our M closed beta project, first announced in August 2015, that January 19th is the last day the service will be available,” it wrote in a statement.

“We launched this project to learn what people needed and expected of an assistant, and we learned a lot.”

M, which is itself short for Moneypenny, never quite lived up to the hype cultivated around its launch in 2015.

It was only available as a Facebook Messenger bot to a few beta testers living in California. The bot itself resembled something markedly similar to Google Assistant, providing recommendations, fulfilling basic tasks and purchasing items online.

‘We’re taking these useful insights to power other AI projects at Facebook’

Humans were also involved, tasked with making M’s suggestions a bit more acute and relevant to users.

But that’s about as far as it got.

The company however hasn’t completely canned the idea of melding artificial intelligence with its existing product lineup though.

“We’re taking these useful insights to power other AI projects at Facebook,” it added.

“We continue to be very pleased with the performance of M suggestions in Messenger, powered by our learnings from this experiment.”

Ultimately, it’s the death of a product that few even remembered existed.

H/T: The Verge

Feature image: Memeburn

Andy Walker
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