You likely use multiple messaging apps and services, including iMessage, Snapchat, Facebook Messenger, Slack and Skype. However, most of us aren’t utilizing all their features — or plugins. As it happens, chatbots have come a long way since AOL; they can up your messaging game and save you time across several platforms. The bots below are nominees and honorees for Best Messaging Site or App at the 2017 Webby Awards. (You can see the full list here.) They’ll help you find travel deals, movie recommendations, weather reports and more — maybe you can shed some apps along the way.
Hello Hipmunk — Travel Planning Bot
This new messaging feature on Facebook Messenger and Slack is a virtual travel-planning bot that simplifies the planning process. Simply ask it questions — “What’s the best date to fly from Chicago in March?” or “What’s the cheapest time to go skiing in Colorado?” — and it’ll answer them.
Butterfly — Data and Survey Bot
Butterfly collects data from employee surveys and gives feedback to upper management. It’s a tool that helps managers improve the efficiency and general culture of the workplace. Butterfly integrates with Slack, Skype for Business and G Suite.
Poncho: Wake Up Weather — Weather Bot
A personal weather forecast app, personified by a cat bot named Poncho. It’s a fun way to start your day. You can download the app, or integrate Poncho with Slack.
And Chill — Movie Recommendation Bot
This is a more “evolved” movie recommendation bot. Instead of just giving a slide reel of options based on your previous watches, like Netflix, you can tell it specific things: “I want a critically acclaimed fantasy film like The Lord of the Rings, but not like The Last Witch Hunter,” and it’ll give you suggestions. Compatible with SMS, Facebook Messenger or And Chill’s website.