Viber launches Public Accounts for businesses
The new features will build on top of the already established Public Chats, which allowed both brands and regular users to start a chat, open to anyone. However, one-to-one communication with the creator of the public chat was not possible without having them in your contacts. So, if you wanted to ask your favorite celebrity a question on Viber, it would have been visible to everyone else who follows that particular Public Chat.
This will change with the new update. Now brands can have their own page, not unlike the ones on Facebook, which users will be able to follow and interact with. The one-on-one conversation will not roll out alongside said pages at first, but it will be available at a later date. This will be the first time users will be able to interact with businesses personally, without having them as a contact.
Additionally, Viber announced that its new update will allow the creation of Viber chatbots. The company will not create or support them, though, and it will be up to individual developers to use the provided tools and set up a chatbot.
There have been several alternatives for brands and businesses to connect with their user base already, so Viber might be a little late to the race. However, with its 800 million users, it might still have a chance to catch up.