Apple Business Chat

Apple rolls out Business Chat

Apple rolled out its Business Chat feature Tuesday, bringing a new way for users to communicate directly with businesses using the Messages app on iPhone and iPad.

Customers can use Apple Business Chat to schedule appointments, receive customer service assistance and complete purchases securely with just a touch via Apple Pay, right from within Messages.

You interact with the brands via the Messages app on your iPhone or iPad and it works in the same way as any other iMessage conversation. As well as asking questions and inquiring about orders, opening hours and reservations, Business Chat also allows you to make purchases through the message stream.

Only you can start a conversation. And when you do, the company can’t see personal information, like your name or phone number, unless you choose to share it for appointments or deliveries. Once you delete a message thread, the company can’t contact you again until you start another conversation.

The service has been available for a while in the US, but today marks the first time the service has been available in more territories including the UK, Australia, Japan, Singapore and several European nations.

In the UK, users can chat to energy firm nPower about Smart Meters. You’ll reach a real person and you will always be in control of whether you share any contact information with them.

You can launch a chat in the Messages app by visiting the “Contact Us” page on nPower’s website on your phone and tapping the “Chat with Messages” button.

As part of the international launch, Apple has confirmed 30 new brands have joined the service, and the full list of companies who are signed up is below.

Apple says more brands will join the service in time, but for now there’s no word on who may be lining up an entry.

Europe

  1. Burberry (UK)
  2. IMImobile (UK)
  3. Matchesfashion (UK)
  4. nPower (UK)
  5. Robins & Day (UK)
  6. buddybank (Italy)
  7. Engie (France)
  8. La Redoute (France)
  9. AXA Insurance (Switzerland)
  10. Swisscom (Switzerland)
  11. Vodafone Germany (Germany)
  12. NH Hotels (Spain – Europe-wide)

North America

  1. 1800 Contacts
  2. Contact At Once
  3. DirecTV (AT&T)
  4. Fairmont Hotels
  5. Kimpton Hotels
  6. Freshly
  7. Macerich Malls
  8. Mall of America
  9. Men’s Wearhouse
  10. Overstock
  11. Quicken Loans
  12. SnapTravel (US, Canada)
  13. west elm  — design consultancy through Business Chat
  14. Hendrick Automotive
  15. Four Seasons (Canada) is expanding to 88 properties around the globe, 100+ languages
  16. Burberry
  17. Matchesfashion
  18. Dreamforce Concierge

Asia

  1. Telstra (Australia)
  2. Harvey Norman (Australia)
  3. KDDI (Japan)
  4. Credit Suisse (Singapore)
  5. Matchesfashion (Japan)

Business Chat requires iOS 11.3 or later. It should also be noted that while the feature has expanded to additional countries, availability varies by brand.

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