Apple is turning iMessage into a customer support centre

Apple has revealed a new iMessage feature called Business Chat, in a bid to make its messaging app the go-to place for all business-related conversations.

According to Apple’s developer site, Business Chat is a way for businesses to connect to customers directly within the messages app on iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch. The application will allow customers to contact businesses through iMessage, Safari, Maps, Spotlight and Siri. Importantly, while the actual messaging will take place in iMessage, these other apps will allow users to start conversations.

This functionality echoes the 24/7 support that the Google Pixel provides, where users are able to message a support team to find quick solutions to any problems they encounter. Apple is taking this idea and making it available for a variety of different businesses.

However, Apple’s new push for business messaging on iMessage isn’t an entirely new concept. Rival services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger already allow users to contact business to address problems. Similarly, Twitter allows business accounts to be converted into customer support pages for users seeking help directly through the microblogging service.

The company will detail more about Business Chat in a keynote duly titled ‘Introducing Business Chat’ that will stream live from WWDC on June 9 at 6pm UK time.

Related: iOS 11: All the features you need to know about

What do you think of the concept of Business Chat? Let us know in the comments.

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