Apple Business Chat, or Business Chat, allows customers to interact with a business through the Messages app. Businesses engage with a Customer Service Platform (CSP) provider to manage customer enquiries through Business Chat.
Apple devices running iOS 11.3 and later or macOS 10.13.4 and later support Business Chat.
It depends on the scope of your Business Chat deployment and the Customer Service Platform (CSP) provider used to implement your vision.
Business Chat currently does not support internal business, or business-to-business, communications.
A blend of bots, or virtual agents, and human agents is recommended to manage Business Chat. The option to escalate to a human agent is mandatory in Business Chat. For implementation purposes, a virtual assistant needs to access Business Chat through a Customer Service Platform (CSP), not through the Business Chat REST API.
This is not possible because phone numbers are not sent through Business Chat.
A blend of bots, or virtual agents, and human agents is recommended to manage Business Chat. The option to escalate to a human agent is mandatory in Business Chat. Therefore, a deployment using virtual agents exclusively does not get approved.
A CSP provider implements the server-to-server REST API solutions on their messaging platform which makes it possible to send and receive texts and photos, request payment through Apple Pay, and much more. They also provide the live agents console to interact with customers and route messages, if necessary, to the correct team in your contact center.
Businesses need to register for Apple's Business Chat service and confirm that they can provide a Messaging service. Once Apple confirms the capability, in addition to other details businesses provided, then the business can be reached by customers via Business Chat.
Group chat with a business is not supported.
Respond only to active conversations. When a customer ends a conversation they shouldn't receive additional messages unless they initiate a new conversation.
First, choose a Customer Service Platform (CSP) provider to deploy your Business Chat solution. Apple has integrated with over 20 CSPs to date. Contact your chosen CSP provider to discuss first steps. Following that, go to Apple Register and create your Business Chat account with Apple (at no charge). During the registration process, let us know which CSP provider you chose, indicate the names of your project team, approve our terms, and upload your branding. Then you can start implementing Business Chat.
Apple has integrated with a wide variety of approved CSP providers.
CSPs are responsible for receiving, routing, processing, responding where appropriate, and forwarding customer messages to businesses. CSPs can implement the many Business Chat features, as well as a bot to respond to simple questions such as Store Hours or Store Locations.
When you log into Apple Register make sure that you review all actions pending for the account. When logged in, you can also send us a message by clicking Help. Additionally, we recommend that you contact your CSP representative.
An iMessage app allows your customers to interact with your app directly within Messages, including within a Business Chat conversation.
An iMessage app extension allows customers to interact with your app directly in Messages. A standalone app sends the customer to the iOS app to interact, which resides outside of the Messages app. Your iMessage app extension is hosted inside your current iOS app.