APIdays Mediterranea returns to Barcelona for its 3rd annual event on November 22 & 23, at the Mobile World Centre at Plaça Catalunya.
APIdays events — which take place in 7 cities around the world each year — are aimed at developers and businesses that make use of application programming interfaces (APIs) for internal integration or to build a developer community of partners and third party app makers. This year’s Barcelona event will focus on chatbots and communication APIs.
Co-Program Chair Nicolas Grenié, says that Barcelona is an obvious location to explore this theme. “Our previous APIdays events in Barcelona have always had a focus on machine learning, natural language processing (NLP) and voice, and chatbots is a natural extension of all of those discussions,” Grenié says. “Chatbots and communications APIs reflect key global tech trends: they are emerging as a key way we are consuming the internet and consuming services right now.”
Secondly, Grenié says Barcelona makes a great location for this conference because of the strong chat-focused startup scene that is blossoming here. He points to Barcelona startups Hu:toma and Caravelo, both of which are now building commercial success from being early adopters of chatbots.
Bruno Pedro, co-founder of Barcelona startup Hitch which focuses on helping businesses build a developer community around their APIs, will be speaking about how chatbots rely on APIs to function, and how an API program can gain more traction by offering chatbots. He believes Barcelona is an ideal city for any startup wanting to experiment with chatbots. “Barcelona is renowned for being the Mobile World Capital. Startups like ThingThing are already changing the way you use chat and interact with different mobile apps. Other startups will follow and benefit from the fact that it’s easier and easier to integrate chat with APIs and offer unique, specialised, chatbot solutions,” says Pedro.
Kim-Fredrik Schneider, creator of the Abi.ai healthcare chatbot agrees. He says Barcelona is a great tech city for “anything mobile-based” and is one of the top places in Europe for startups. At APIdays, Schneider will dig into why healthcare is an ideal sector for building chatbots: “I’ll be talking about why the first mile of healthcare is the perfect application for chatbots.”
“Telemedicine has struggled to gain traction because of utilisation, and we are convinced that chatbots will be a big part of the solution to that problem,” Schneider explains. “When you think about going to a doctor’s office for an appointment versus a house call, a house call is much easier. In telemedicine, that is the equivalent of you going to the doctor. With chatbots, like in our case, the doctor comes to the patient, the service comes to the patient, and that makes a really big difference. Chat makes a really good environment for healthcare.”
He says chatbots are ideal for areas like mental wellness and sexual health as there is a more personal and intimate connection with a chatbot. And given the shortage of healthcare professionals and demands on their time, chatbots can also provide both realtime and asynchronous communication.
Other speakers at APIdays will include Kassandra Perch, Developer Evangelist at serverless platform Auth0 and Webtask.io, Johan Ahlund from JabberBrain and Phil Leggetter from Nexmo.
“If you are a design shop who is used to doing web apps and mobile apps, you will have more clients wanting you to do chatbots so you will need to know the landscape,” says Grenié. “Some businesses are experimenting with bots as a way to automate processes and gain efficiency internally, and tech providers need to know how they can ride the wave of bots. All those people should be attending this conference.”
This is a guest post by Mark Boyd – Writer and API industry analyst, Founder of API-focused startup Platformable