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August 23, 2016

AI calendaring app Genee acquired by Microsoft for Office 365

News: Genee acts as a digital personal assistant to schedule and reschedule meetings.

By CBR Staff Writer

Microsoft has acquired AI-based scheduling service, Genee, to accelerate intelligent experiences in Office 365.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed, with Microsoft planning to shut down the Genee service on 1 September 2016 and integrate it into Office 365.

Genee, launched by Ben Cheung and Charles Lee in 2014, simplifies the time-taking task of scheduling and rescheduling meetings.

It uses natural language processing and optimised decision-making algorithms, allowing users to set up meetings without having to check a calendar.

Genee understands all kinds of commands and works across email and calendar, allowing users to request and set-up meetings if they don’t have access to someone’s calendar.

The task is implemented through email by including Genee on users list of CCs, along with the individuals they want to attend.

In that email, according to Genee, users might type: “Genee, schedule a call for next week.”

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Genee currently works on iOS, SMS Chat, Twitter Chat, Facebook Messenger and Skype Chat. The app's features will most likely be integrated into Microsoft’s Outlook Mail and Calendar.

Microsoft corporate vice president of Outlook and Office 365 Rajesh Jha said in a blogpost: “As we continue to build new Office 365 productivity capabilities and services our customers value, I’m confident the Genee team will help us further our ambition to bring intelligence into every digital experience.”

Cheung and Lee said: “We consider Microsoft to be the leader in personal and enterprise productivity, AI, and virtual assistant technologies, so we look forward to bringing our passion and expertise to a team that is committed to delivering cutting-edge language and intelligence services.”

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