How RevTwo Acquires Data: Overview

Overview

Complex products have complex problems!

Unfortunately, the only way to solve such problems today is with highly trained personnel and time. Current methods include:

1) On product data and event logging
2) Remote product access
3) Remote field tech support
4) IoT cloud connectivity

Today’s Challenges

All with varying success and their own unique set of challenges. For example:

Product logs are useful but finding the right information in the right log can often be time-consuming and frustrating.

Remote Access, which provides skilled technicians with access to physical products, is becoming less and less available as the cybersecurity threats of today’s world multiply and the risks associated with a data breach grow. Even with access, technicians still face the challenge of identifying the right diagnostic information and using their expertise to parse its meaning.

Remote Field Technician support provides a more experienced product expert at the disposal of field technicians who have varying skill and training level, to aid in the troubleshooting process while onsite. While this helps to prevent site revisits, it increases the costs of already expensive support activity.

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How RevTwo Acquires Data: Walk-Up

Walk-up data acquisition is built upon two pillars:

1) Physical proximity to the product, provided by the customer themselves or a field service technician.

2) Mobile invocation. A mobile support app is a very convenient vehicle for accessing data. It is easy to distribute, provides a high degree of security, and is easy to use. RevTwo uses mobile apps to provide walk-up data acquisition.

Walk-up data acquisition is ideal in situations where the physical product does not have access to the Internet, because it is in a secure environment, or because Internet access is not built into the product.

In a walk-up scenario, product data can be obtained in one of three ways.

Ad-Hoc Networking

Ad-hoc data access works by forming a transient connection to the product itself. The underlying communication technology for these transient connections is usually Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, but other mechanisms could be developed. The general process is to:

1) Identify the connection available for a particular product
2) Form a secure connection to the product
3) Request diagnostic information via that secure connection
4) Obtain that diagnostic information
5) Shut down the connection
6) Use the information to perform an AI analysis

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How RevTwo Acquires Data: In-Product

In the in-product scenario, RevTwo acquires data from the product itself. While this sounds similar to most IoT implementations, there are some pretty significant differences that lower the barrier to deployment acceptance. First, RevTwo is provided in a customer-brandable helper application. The helper application has a user interface that manages the support workflow.

Unless requested by the customer, RevTwo is inert and does not communicate. No data is posted, remote access is not possible.

When the customer has a support issue, the RevTwo Support Application is typically invoked via a link on the product’s own user interface or via the operating system tray.

Support Helper Application

The RevTwo Support Helper Application contains many standard features, including built-in

• Data collection
• AI invocation
• Chat
• Optional customer controlled remote connectivity
• Optional customer-controlled VoIP support

For the purpose of this discussion, we are going to focus on the workflow that happens when a customer requests support. In this scenario, the Support Helper Application does the following actions:

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How RevTwo Acquires Data: Cloud

The next data acquisition mechanism supported by RevTwo is via a cloud data source. Cloud data access can be optionally performed for each issue submitted to RevTwo. Each product type has its own cloud data collection mechanism and is invoked regardless of the presence of an existing data set. In fact, the cloud data acquisition has the ability to modify the data set submitted with the issue before AI evaluation. Each issue that utilizes cloud data acquisition, goes into a pending state until the cloud data request is satisfied.

The RevTwo cloud data access mechanism is not limited to a single data source.

 

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How RevTwo Acquires Data: API

This final data acquisition mechanism is simply to attach the data to a RevTwo AI request. RevTwo allows API interaction with the AI directly. The API allows the attachment of a data dictionary and can be invoked from any requesting source.

How is R2 AI different from other AI’s?

When we talk to customers, we are often asked how we are different from other AI solutions out there.

AI solutions have been around for a while. If you’ve ever gone to a website and needed support for a product that you purchased, when you select the chat feature, you’re talking to a chatbot, not a human. A chatbot employs AI that takes the text you’ve typed in and matches it to a knowledge base and then asks more questions until it gives you an answer. This use case is mostly used in B2C businesses.

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AI Isn’t as Hard to Implement as People Think

AI isn’t hard.  It can help you today.

I am reading more and more about how Artificial Intelligence (AI for those of you who have not been online in awhile) is going to change the world.  And soon, like the end of next year, according to this article.

But in my opinion, when people think of things like AI, they think of things like chatbots, or in-app support.  Indeed, these tools can perform many useful functions that humans once had to do.  But chatbots can only help with simple issues.  If the issue is complex, then humans have to get involved.

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Webinar: Using AI and IoT to Transform Support

RevTwo, Instron, and Service Strategies discuss how AI is changing the support game for iot products with AutonomousSupport!

Autonomous Support for Startups

Startups are hard. Everything is moving at a mile a minute as you try to build references and customers. Unfortunately, in the mad rush to get the product out the door, support is often an afterthought.

For today’s smart products, we are increasingly finding that a smart product does not mean a smart user. Product returns plague the industry and are indicative of the difficulties consumers face during a technical setup or on boarding process.

Product returns are exacerbated by the negative reviews that are sure to follow. For startups, this can mean life or death for your brand.

For smart products, fast & accurate support is essential to customer success and to building initial brand traction and loyalty. Continue reading “Autonomous Support for Startups”