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You're out of luck, AAMI: Meet Ava, the new voice, and face, of Suncorp

Business

Suncorp has invented a new face for its insurance arm AAMI. She’s young, she’s active online and you could accuse her of being completely fake.

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The bank and insurance company has invented Ava, a counterpart to Siri and what Suncorp says is an “artificial human’’ or ‘’digital employee’’ who will become the online face of its AAMI insurance brand.

She even has a face of a young, smiling woman and one that seems to reflect Australian diversity.

Ava is believed to be a world first for the insurance sector and Suncorp said she, or it, also had a personality and had been “charged with emotional intelligence”.

Ava will learn to read the face and tone of customers, and adjust hers to suit.

It is part of the dramatic change underway at Suncorp through its digital transformation that was accelerated during the initial months of the pandemic.

Suncorp’s executive general manager of digital distribution Katherine Carmody said Ava was currently trained to answer questions relating to policy coverage, price, discounts, excess, optional extras, claims and payment options.

Ava is believed to be a world-first and if trials go well Ava’s influence will move out to other areas of the AAMI business.

“This is cutting edge technology that propels us into the future,” Carmody said.

“What we will learn from the Ava trial will be invaluable when it comes to humanising our digital experience and revolutionising our customer service offering.

“The way people engage with us is changing, and we’re adapting to ensure we give customers what they want.”

AAMI used Soul Machines whose co-founder and chief business officer Greg Cross Ava’s emotional intelligence and intuitive functionality stemmed from her digital brain.

Ava has a patented digital brain which had been created using research in psychology, neuroscience, and cognitive sciences.

It was that sort of research that allowed for Ava to be emotionally-intelligent, he said.

“It brings Ava to life in the same way our own brains bring each and every one of us to life,’’ Cross said.

She is currently trained to answer questions relating to policy coverage, price, discounts, excess, optional extras, claims and payment options.

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