Will.i.am‘s tech startup, I.am+, made the announcement on Monday that they are entering the world of artificial intelligence, by way of a new voice assistant that will power customer service bots. Named “Omega,” this AI assistant is described as being similar to Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri. This AI-powered tool serves as a huge departure for the company, which has primarily focused on consumer products like wireless headphones for their 5-year lifespan.
The launch was also accompanied by the information that I.am+ has raised whopping $117 million in venture funding, with the bulk — $89 million — raised by Salesforce Ventures in a round that closed in March but was never announced until now.
The former Black Eyed Peas member introduced Omega at Salesforce.com’s Dreamforce conference in San Francisco. He told Reutersthat the corporate community was ready for a new AI-powered voice assistant saying, “I wanted to create something that allows us to do many things. There’s so much you can do with a voice platform.”
The tech startups’s website describes Omega as a “voice-first A.I. platform that delivers natural and engaging user experiences for organizations of any size.” It is being advertised as a highly customizable tool with a “series of pluggable modules” that can give Omega “personality” and “opinions.”