Voice Assistant as a Service (VAaaS) company Slang Labs announced an investment from the Google Assistant investment program, along with 100x Entrepreneurs, Velu Murugan, Thomas George and their existing investor Endiya Partners.
Founded in 2017 by serial entrepreneurs Kumar Rangarajan, Giridhar Murthy and Satish Chandra Gupta, Slang Labs is a multilingual in-app voice assistant that gets natively embedded inside an app as a multimodal overlay, allowing its users to transact with the app by just talking to it or by interacting with the visuals of the app directly. Its delivery mechanism allows for the brands to integrate this experience inside their app without having to worry about the overhead of building one from scratch or maintaining them.
The company lets customers interact with the platform using languages such as Indian English or Hinglish, Hindi, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam.
“We are glad to be part of the Google Assistant Investments program. This investment by Google emphasizes the importance of Voice inside Apps and highlights the most significant technology trend for this decade – Voice. Voice is for this decade, what mobile apps were for the last decade, – the most disruptive and democratising technology trend that enables millions of businesses and billions of people to transact better online and across multiple domains. We have seen an increase in demand for this technology during the pandemic and will continue innovating for a better consumer interface experience,” said Kumar Rangarajan, Slang Labs cofounder.
Currently, the company claims that the Slang Voice Assistants have been integrated with apps by P&G, Udaan, BigBasket, Redbus, Shine and SpiceJet.
The Bangalore based startup will use the funding to scale operations and sales and marketing efforts, founder Kumar Rangajan says. The in-app voice assistant is also eyeing an overseas foray by the end of this year, he says.
In the past, companies in the conversational AI space such as Bengaluru-based SaaS startup Vernacular.ai have also gained attention. Backed by AngelList, LetsVenture, Exfinity Ventures and others and with over $5.1Mn in funding, the company offers a voice-tech platform which is an intelligent, multilingual platform that can help automate up to 80% of call centre operations. The company is focused on voice solutions for calling operations and isn’t in the direct competition of Slang Labs.