Facebook is shutting down its AI-powered personal assistant called 'Facebook M' on 19 January. The company will keep the context-based suggestion feature of the chatbot in its Messenger app.
According to a report on The Verge, the bot has served its purpose by learning from human interaction, a reason why it's being discontinued. The chatbot used to send location, make restaurant reservations, book plane tickets and also draw pictures for the users.
Facebook had employed contractors to check the responses coming from the bot. If the responses were correct, they would allow the bot to send it to the user suggesting the AI as a correct answer. The correct message would be stored and forwarded next time someone asked the same question. If the response was not correct or appropriate, a correction would be provided by the contractor which would be used as the correct reply from next time.
Thanks to the human help, M was able to answer questions which other voice assistants found difficult to answer.
The contractors were available round the clock to answer the questions asked and to help the software pick a correct answer. As the work of the contractors is coming to an end, Facebook has decided to shift the contractors to take up new roles in other sectors of the company.
The Facebook M bot was announced in August 2015 and still is in beta form.