Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said that the digital home-share company will reap the benefits of artificial intelligence more than hotels, at least in the near term.
“The reason we know this is because AI is mostly changing… the digital world a lot faster than the physical world,” Chesky told reporters during a meeting in New York City on Tuesday. “Because we have more of a digital product, we can actually adapt and change faster.”
Chesky also said that hotels are not going to be different five years from now because of AI, but that Airbnb “will be transformed.”
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Chesky said the technology will enhance the platform’s customer service, which he admitted is a pain point for the company given that there are 70 major policies a customer agent might have to read through when an issue arises and that each of them can be 100 pages long with all the different constituencies.
AI has the ability to read the corpus of all of its policies and understand the history behind 1.7 billion reservations as well as how prior issues were resolved, he said.
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Chesky said this won’t replace agents, but assist them in offering 24/7 support. Agents will then provide more bespoke services.
He also believes the technology will help personalize the search process even more to help match users with their ideal home and experience. He likened it to having a personal travel agent.