AI Shopping Assistant explained at The National Convention of "Society of Global Business"

, Masayuki Chatani, AI

    Since Rakuten AI platform has been launched in April 2017, we have launched 40+ AI Chatbot for external customers (consumers and business partners of Rakuten) as well as internal employees. But those are based on FAQ or frequently asked questions and provide answers to relatively simple questions.

    As a next step, in May 2018, we have launched AI Shopping Assistant called “AI Smartphone Navi (AI スマホナビin Japanese) from Rakuten Mobile. This AI Shopping Assistant helps customers to find out the best combination of smartphone, SIM card and monthly service plan from various possible combinations. Japenese)

    On July 8th, I was honored to be invited as a panel at The 4th National Convention of “Society of Global Business ( ” held at Masaru Ibuka (known as a founder of Sony Corporation) Auditorium in Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan. The theme of the panel I joined was “AI and business at Hyper Globalization Age.” Moderator & panelists are from Nikkei Newspaper, Toyota Motor Corporation and Japan Economic Revitalization Bureau.


Photo 1. Panel discussion at The 4th National Convention of “Society of Global Business” – the theme of the panel was “AI and business in Hyper Globalization age”

    In my short presentation to introduce what Rakuten is doing in AI domain, I introduced this new AI Shopping Assistant to the audience.


Photo 2. My short presentation about AI-nization at Rakuten including AI Shopping Assistant

    The AI Shopping Assistant has taken into the information of products, customer navigation and interaction dialog as sources of knowledge of Smart Agent AI. We, as a user, often experience difficulty in finding products with search by words because the search is often handled as “single shot.”

    However, we decided to tackle this intrinsic problem, so we implemented the capability that the AI Shopping Assistant keeps context of interactions with customer. This enables that customer can gradually & interactively approach the smartphone of the choice in terms of specifications, colors and features. In addition, AI Shopping Assistant understands even vague expressions about the features of the smartphone.

    This AI Shopping Assistant is available 247 at Rakuten Mobile website. This Assistant guide you to the choice of smartphone, SIM card and monthly service plan which will be best fit with you.

    After our panel session concluded, many audience had approached me to share their impressions to my presentations and our panels which were quite positive.