Intelligent Virtual Assistants V/s Traditional Chatbots – What All You Need To Know?

Intelligent Virtual Assistants V/s Traditional Chatbots – What All You Need To Know?

In today‚Äôs digital world as customer expectations continue to rise, more and more companies are changing their business models and adapting to the new market reality. All this change is mainly driven by the ‚Äúcustomer‚ÄĚ. In today‚Äôs digitalized world customers tend to expect relevant content to what they‚Äôre doing anytime and anywhere at any place on the device that they use. And to keep them always connected, your business needs technologies parallel to their match.

In the world of Artificial Intelligence (AI) ‚Äď intelligent virtual assistants and traditional chatbots are two of the most well-known words that a user often feels identical, but they mean different things.

In this blog, we will look at the key differences between Intelligent Virtual Assistants and Traditional Chatbots.

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What are Intelligent Virtual Assistants?

Intelligent Virtual Assistants are Artificial Intelligence-enabled chat assistants that use analytics and cognitive computing to produce customized responses. Virtual assistants answer your every request using cutting-edge speech recognition technology. As the number of queries increases with time, it learns what a user wants when they ask a certain question. Intelligent Virtual Assistants can be used for a variety of applications across industries. In simple terms, an intelligent virtual assistant is a digital persona-based software agent that helps users carry out their day-to-day activities. Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana, Alexa, Bixby, DataBot, Lyra, and other intelligent virtual assistants are among the best.

What is a Traditional Chatbot?

Traditional Chatbots are keyword-based automated programs that interact with customers as a human would. Chatbots attend to customers at the point of the day making it well suited for customer support requests. Some of the traditional chatbots include Swelly Bot for Facebook Messenger, eBay ShopBot, Lyft chatbot, etc.

Key Differences Between Intelligent Virtual Assistants and Traditional Chatbots

The main difference between virtual assistants and chatbots is the type of service that they offer. Intelligent Virtual Assistants are customer-focused and do not follow any scripts like how traditional chatbots usually do.


Traditional chatbots are algorithm-based and cannot understand a customer’s intent if not programmed correctly. Chatbots can be used to undertake simple activities such as answering consumer questions about a product and assisting clients in gaining the necessary knowledge and information.

Unlike chatbots, Virtual assistants use Machine Learning (ML), Natural Language Processing (NLP), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to interpret and respond to conversations in a personalized way.


Virtual Assistants help users with typical tasks such as scheduling appointments, making phone calls, making travel arrangements, and managing email accounts. Chatbots are like assistants in customer service as well as sales and marketing teams. A chatbot can easily save your time and effort. It can help resolve basic issues without customer support’s intervention.

Support Channel

Traditional Chatbots are installed on websites, support portals, as well as on messaging channels such as WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger. Whereas, virtual assistants are built-in with some devices. Such devices work on voice commands.

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Intelligent virtual assistants have chat-like interfaces whereas chatbots use a conversational user interface.  Virtual assistants are even responsive to voice commands. Virtual assistants such as Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, and others can answer questions, play music, and control lighting, air conditioning, locks, and other smart home devices for you.

Customer Interaction

Customers can speak naturally just as they would with a human with Intelligent virtual assistants. With conversational AI technology, businesses are leveraging the capacity to engage their customers and optimize their customer service. For example, Spotify and Amazon are some of the companies that are using artificial intelligence and machine learning to learn user preferences.  Whereas, chatbots perform only limited activities and provide scripted responses. Chatbots are not intelligent enough to interact with customers and are more particularly based on if-else statements. If some of the conditions are not met, chatbots transfer the conversation to a human agent.

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Read A Constructive Guide to Conversational AI


Both Intelligent Virtual Assistants and Traditional Chatbots address different needs of a user in spite of having similarities in their technical base. Chatbots are traditionally enterprise-driven whereas virtual assistants are used in the consumer world and handheld devices such as smartphones, tabs, laptops, etc. These both differ in functionality and cannot perform similar tasks.

Algoscale is one of the leading Artificial Intelligence and Data Analytics Companies in the USA, helping businesses become more agile and smart by adopting creative and effective artificial intelligence solutions. Our AI solutions combine business, development, and operations data to provide actionable insights and a unified perspective of our clients’ changing business environments, allowing them to take advantage of automation and improve business outcomes over time.

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