A built-in alarm clock wakes users with tailored weather forecasts within rich, expandable push notifications delivered by the app’s namesake, a hip Brooklyn-dwelling cartoon cat wearing a yellow hooded rainslicker. Poncho also serves up daily horoscopes, motivational quotes and words of the day with GIFs, memes and punchy one-liners.
It’s utility mixed with personality.
“The content is tailored for a new platform – short, light, emotional and push notification-driven,” D’Arcy said. “We’re building a relationship with our users. Poncho is their friend.”
Poncho is also a chatbot and recently expanded to the Facebook Messenger, Kik and Viber chat platforms. But the Poncho team found that users have been asking its titular weather-cat about more than just the weather – they may bring up their job, who they’re dating or politics.
Although Poncho isn’t yet equipped to handle the back and forth those types of non-weather-related conversations require, it’s investing more in artificial intelligence and creating flows to accommodate other subjects.
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