KAI Partners with Microsoft to Launch an AI-Based Virtual Assistant at Gambir, Bandung, Yogyakarta, and Surabaya Gubeng Stations

 |   Indonesia News Center

A man interacting with an AI-powered digital assistant screen

Courtesy of PT KAI

Jakarta, 23 December 2023 – In a bid to enhance inclusive information accessibility for all customers, PT Kereta Api Indonesia (Persero) has launched a virtual assistant in the form of a generative artificial intelligence (AI) avatar chatbot displayed on vertical TV screens. Utilizing the Azure OpenAI Service and Azure Cognitive Service from Microsoft, the virtual assistant with the avatar character named Nilam can respond to customer queries in real-time through voice and text. The Nilam virtual assistant, accessible through touch or voice commands, will debut at key stations, including Gambir Station in Jakarta, Bandung Station, Yogyakarta Station, and Surabaya Gubeng Station, starting Friday (22/12/2023).

Commercial Director of KAI, Hadis Surya Palapa, stated, “On a daily basis, there are more than 200 people who come to the station’s customer service seeking information about our trains, such as ticket availability, cancellation procedures, or details about station facilities. Typically, customers must take a queue number and wait for their turn. However, many customers are in a hurry to catch their trains. That’s why we’re launching the virtual assistant Nilam to help enhance the quantity of services for customers simultaneously.”

“In terms of activation, this service can be activated as easily as touching the screen or through voice activation by saying ‘hello Nilam.’ Customers can then state their questions directly or type them on the screen. The virtual assistant Nilam will promptly provide the answers. We hope that with the presence of virtual assistant Nilam, our customer service agents can focus on serving more complex customer needs,” added Hadis.

In addition to the touchscreen and voice activation capabilities made possible by Microsoft AI, the virtual assistant Nilam also features multi-language capabilities from Azure OpenAI Service, facilitating more effective communication. Apart from Indonesian, it supports languages such as English, Mandarin, and regional languages like Javanese and Sundanese.

“In this advancing digital era, the implementation of AI technology can provide significant benefits in public services. Through the integration of generative AI rooted in processing information using everyday language, public services like KAI can respond to high-volume customer inquiries more quickly. This aligns with our commitment at Microsoft to leverage technology to empower Indonesians inclusively. We hope that through similar innovations, we can reach more people and contribute to enhancing public service standards in Indonesia. We appreciate KAI for taking the initial steps towards more inclusive public services,” stated Maya Arvini, Public Sector Director, Microsoft Indonesia.

The presence of the virtual assistant Nilam at Gambir, Bandung, Yogyakarta, and Surabaya Gubeng Stations, which are among the busiest train stations in Indonesia, marks the first phase of KAI’s AI-based avatar chatbot development. In the future, this virtual assistant is expected to be available at other stations, with support for an increasingly diverse range of languages.

“In this initial phase, we hope to gather customer feedback on the performance of the virtual assistant, as well as features that still need to be added or developed. Our priority includes making the virtual assistant more inclusive for all customers, including those with disabilities,” concluded Hadis.