One year ago on May 2nd 2016 we released Mica, the Hipster Cat Bot on Facebook Messenger — only a few days after Facebook announced that they are going to open their platform for chatbots.
After launching on Facebook, Mica was also released on Skype, Telegram, Kik and Viber and is available in Beta for WeChat, Slack, Alexa and Line.
We would like to share some insights into what happened during the first year of Mica:
We’ve seen some exciting growth and interesting patterns emerge. From countries we would have never expected Mica to go big (hello Philippines!), to interaction times (people don’t chat during work), to very different behaviors on different Platforms (Skype vs. Kik couldn’t be more different). Reaching 250.000 Users within a year, and that with a retention rate of more than 15%, has been quite a wild ride!
Lots of Meows
Besides Mica lots of other super interesting things happened:
- We gave lots of talks about Mica and chatbots
- We co-organized the Botbarcamp.wien & Hackathon with approimately 200 participants
- We started co-organizing the BotsHub.org Vienna monthly meetup (every last Tuesday)
- Barbara was mentor at Lemmings.io
- Barbara became author for VentureBeat, chatbotsmagazine.com and chatbotslife.com
Lots of Features
Not only did we have the opportunity to grow, also Mica learned a lot of new tricks:
- Mica is now fluent in Emojis, so when you post a burger emoji, she sends you burger places in your last city
- Mica analyses audio and image input and responds accordingly. So when you post a picture of your cat at home whe says “Oh, how nice, a cat!”
- Mica sends funny cat facts such as: As child Nikola Tesla was inspired to understand the secrets of electricity after being shocked by static electricity from his beloved cat, Macak.
…to name just a few.
Lots of channels
We invited more people to our party and finally launched on Viber, Slack, Skype for Business as well as Microsoft Teams and we are ready to go on a few other channels. Obviously we also have a website integration available that also works as mobile app, and if you really insist we could even supply you with hipster venues via Email or SMS.
Lots of bot
To round it all off we founded the Chatbots Agency, a software development agency that builds bots for customers and helps them develop their ideas. Via the agency we had the opportunity to be part of some exciting projects such as Patent Office chatbot Albert and a few others we can’t talk about yet 😉
Lots left to explore
While it’s been an amazing year and we’ve come quite a long way, there are still many aspects we are looking forward to explore. Improving Mica’s language skills and voice recognition, teaching her new languages and at some point taking her out of the cloud and into augmented reality are all on the list! We’re already eager to see how next years summary is going to look like, but one thing we are sure of: it’s gonna be another awesome journey! Here’s to many more meows!