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Skype chatbots now work in group chats

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Cards – Bots can be programmed to support the use of visual cards with images carousels and receipts

Adding card for in-conversation functionality allows users to do anything from starting a trivia contest to reserving hotel rooms without leaving the chat. Microsoft also said that natural language abilities of Skype Bots have also been boosted using the Bing framework. Developers can also access bot building resources through the Framework's hub. This aims to make it easier for users to keep interacting with different businesses without the need to log in constantly. The company presented a preview of a Bing services integration, which could make it easier to detect both intents and entities.

The tech giant promised to provide useful and fun interactions when it announced back in March to integrate bots into Skype.

It's unclear if this was an intentional act by the Skype for Web team or if there has been a bug somewhere, but Microsoft hasn't spoken about the update as of yet.

As part of today's updates to the Skype Bot Platform, Microsoft added groups support so that bots can now be part of group conversations. Just a few weeks ago, Facebook talked about including new features for Messenger chatbots. These bots create a more vivid visual within the chat window, offering images along with information a user may be seeking. Microsoft is also working on enabling single sign-in on cards so that users will have to authorize their credentials only once.

The updates to Skype bots are exciting, and we're sure to see more new features in the near future. When Microsoft announced its framework in March, 20,000 developers signed up in the first month.

Group chat is the most notable feature among the new capabilities Microsoft has recently gifted Skype chatbots.

While we can't think of the last time we, along with our friends, chatted with a bot en masse, Microsoft's tweak will now give those looking to make game-themed bots a bit more flexibility (at least). It is now also possible for chatbots to use cards in order to share carousals, receipts, images and images with buttons.

Lilian Rincon, the group program manager for Skype, explains that by doing this, natural language understanding can become a core part of Skype Bots, marking a first in the industry.

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