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April 12, 2019

Washington, DC Convention Center Debuts Voice-based Wayfinding

There's a new, voice-based wayfinding solution for visitors to Washington, DC's Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Developed via a partnership between Events DC and hospitality industry voice hub Volara, the new solution is built atop Amazon Alexa is powered by Volara’s conversation management technology. Inside the 2.3 million-square-foot building sit wayfinding kiosks that host the voice assistant. Visitors are encouraged to ask Alexa about happenings within the convention center and ask where to find meeting spaces, food-and-beverage outlets, the closest shoe shine, the business center and more. More than 50 kiosks with the Volara-powered solution on Amazon Alexa will greet visitors, and voice commands will extend outside the facility to local businesses, services and attractions.

Wayfinding is just the first step, officials said. The Events DC team is working with Volara to add more commands to the voice assistant with the goal of personalizing experiences for visitors. Show organizers can customize or brand kiosks strategically placed in their event locations. Volara’s conversation management engine will then be leveraged to respond to voice prompts for each event. The convention center is considering selling kiosk sponsorships as a value-added service. An automobile manufacturer, for example, may want to sponsor all kiosks in the Convention Center during The Auto Show.

Volara provides platform agnostic voice-based conversation management software and a secure integrations hub to the hospitality venues. Its software turns the leading consumer voice assistants (Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and IBM Watson) into a business tool that drives more efficient customer service, influences visitors’ behaviors, and improves net promoter scores, the company said. Volara is also a launch partner for both Google Assistant Interpreter Mode and Alexa for Hospitality.

To learn more about Volara-powered voice assistant programs, visit https://volara.io.

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