On top of artificial intelligence technology from SRI, smart calendar app Tempo now has some natural language capabilities.
With the new version of the free Tempo iPhone app, launching today, you can add new calendar events simply by typing in natural phrases. So, for example, it’s smart enough to schedule a lunch properly if you type in (or dictate with the iPhone’s keyboard) “Lunch at 1p tomorrow.”
Additionally, the app has gotten a redesign and can now integrate with the iOS Reminders app, bringing reminders right onto your Tempo calendar alongside other events.
“A lot of Tempo’s smarts was really around meetings,” said Raj Singh, co-founder and CEO of Tempo maker Tempo AI, in an interview. “One of the big goals for this release was to try to come up with a user experience that we felt could both satisfy the very consumer calendar user, as well as the meeting-heavy person.”
Tempo launched last year with a slew of intriguing features, like the ability to look up emails related to your meetings, get directions to meeting locations, and log into conference calls with a few taps. Today’s update also delivers the ability to use Waze for crowdsourced directions.
Singh tells me he was surprised how quickly Tempo’s users started adding calendar events through the app, which up until now involved filling out several fields in a form. Even with that less than ideal input mechanism, Tempo users have been adding new events almost every other time they open the app. With natural language support, that figure is sure to increase.
Tempo has been my go-to calendar app for months now, and the new features definitely improve the experience. I used to dread adding new calendar entries from within the app, but now it’s easy to just type in or dictate a new meeting quickly. The app was generally smart enough to figure out what I meant by scheduling things for the next day or “next Wednesday.”
I also appreciated Tempo’s integration with iOS Reminders, since it serves as a quick way to get reminders made through Siri right on your calendar. Singh says many general consumers typically use their calendars to jot down tasks rather than meetings.
“I think calendar and to-do [functionality] is sort of a harmonious experience,” Singh said. “Some to-dos are just reminders for today, some are date driven.”
Tempo AI is based in Menlo Park, Calif., and has so far raised around $12.5 million from Relay Ventures, Miramar Ventures, SRI, and others.