newspapers cover a telephone and the surface underneath it and on the wall
PHOTO: Wendy White

Forrester has named IBM the only leader in its Forrester New Wave: Conversational Computing Platforms, Q2, 2018 (fee required) released April 12. Forrester named Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Nuance Communications as providers with "competitive options." They also found Oracle offers a "strong option for certain applications, while Rulai lags."

Forrester researchers Rop Koplowitz and Michael Facemire found these vendors' offerings enable application developers to "create customized voice and chat experiences without the need for data scientists." They called the vendor market "thriving, albeit chaotic" and found an "increasing demand for conversational functionality." 

To get into this Forrester party, vendors had to have end-to-end conversational computing platform functionality, a robust development environment for applications and "relevance to Forrester clients," or those "most relevant to Forrester clients, as indicated by frequency of client requests and use cases."

In other customer experience software news ...

Adobe Acquires Sayspring

Adobe has acquired voice technology provider Sayspring, which helps organizations create voice interfaces for Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Sayspring's vision aligns tightly with Adobe’s vision "to give everyone — from emerging artists to global brands — everything they need to design and deliver exceptional digital experiences," Sayspring founder and CEO Mark Webster blogged April 16.

In addition to the entire Sayspring team joining Adobe, Webster also announced the following.

  • Sayspring is now free
  • Sayspring is now available via invite
  • Sayspring is continuing to develop as part of Adobe, with new features coming soon.

Vista Equity Acquires Majority Stake in LogicMonitor

Vista Equity Partners has signed an agreement to acquire LogicMonitor, a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)-based monitoring platform for hybrid IT infrastructures and cloud services. Existing owner Providence Strategic Growth will retain a minority ownership stake in LogicMonitor. The LogicMonitor platform is designed to deliver real-time performance visibility to IT operations. Vista has made other notable acquisitions in the enterprise technology space, such as Marketo, Lithium Technologies and Xactly.

The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of this year. Financial terms have not been disclosed.

Clari Partners with LinkedIn

Sales enablement technology provider Clari has partnered with LinkedIn Sales Solutions by integrating Clari’s AI-based Opportunity-to-Close platform with LinkedIn Sales Navigator. It is designed to give sales representatives insights into key accounts within Clari. The integration is also meant to help salespeople access their LinkedIn network without leaving the Clari platform.

Urban Airship Hires Marketing SVP

Mobile engagement provider Urban Airship has hired Michael Stone as senior vice president of marketing. The former Salesforce executive brings more than 25 years of technology marketing experience. Stone will lead Urban Airship’s global marketing team. He will report directly to CEO and president Brett Caine

Stone most recently ran marketing for Salesforce Community Cloud. Earlier in his career, Stone worked for industry leaders such as PeopleSoft and HP directing product marketing and product management functions.