What's New in Studio 6?
Natural Language Processing
Studio 6 takes natural language processing to a new level with the addition of the Cloud Speech-to-Text node. This node offers a streaming interface to transcribe user utterances.This means we can do open speech recognition without any delay making the interaction with the virtual agent more natural. This node supports more than 50 languages making our virtual agents multilingual.
We have also integrated with Google Text-to-Speech (TTS) service increasing the number of TTS languages that we support to more that 17 with 100 different voices available. The Google TTS voices also support SSML specification providing the ability to further customize the TTS output and make the virtual agent sound natural.
We have added a new node called Tone Analyzer that can detect user sentiment. We have integrated with IBM Watson’s Tone Analyzer service that can detect user sentiment from text phrases. This node allows you to identify seven different sentiments from user utterances in real-time and control call behaviour on the fly.
Other features and improvements
- Node Logging feature support Aurora DB.
- A new mathematical function to generate random numbers has been added to the Expression Builder.
- The SubString function in Expression Builder supports variables as parameters.
- Payment Process node can be used within a Workflow and Messaging task.
- The voice transcription feature available in a Data Store supports language selection.
- QforMe add waiter to the queue API support ANI override.
- All node icons has been updated.
- A new premium function called Get Number Type has been added to the expression builder. As the name suggests, this function returns the type of phone number - mobile, landline, and virtual.
- Data Stores support a new data type called “Long Text” to support text data that is longer than 50 characters. The text field is also re-sizable.
- The SIP trunk provisioning process has been simplified to be a single step process. They also support friendly names. WhatsApp integration using Clickatell API. You can create a messaging task that can be triggered by WhatsApp messages similar to SMS messages.
- QforMe “Add To Queue” API supports optional ANI override.
Bug fixes 🐛
- Incorrect field names are displayed when deleting a payment gateway.
- Incorrect field names are displayed when deleting a node logging profile.
- Account Manager and read only user must be allowed to view the predictive dialer app.
- Do not show the previous task versions in the outbound task drop down list when creating a campaign.
- Workflow’s Run Now feature does not get logged in the usage table.
- Viewing reports in an imported task throws an error.
- If a variable name is changed it does not get updated in all subsequent expression builder and nodes that refer to the variable.
- WebRTC calls get disconnected after no input event handler is triggered.
- Incorrect pagination values in List Accounts.
- A pop window showing an error message disappears too quickly when uploading QForMe prompt audios.
- Menu and Form nodes play a wrong TTS voice under special circumstances.
- HangUp node is not found in the list of nodes when creating a new node.
- QforMe waiter status UI has a minor bug.
- Field name search in a Messaging task does not work.
- Unable to type in grammar in Menu’s sub nodes.
-- Previous Releases --
webRTC integration with Studio
webRTC has grown in popularity and is supported natively by majority of the browsers today. This integration allows Studio to accept a webRTC call and answer it using a Studio voice task. webRTC extends the reach of Studio to web browsers as a potential endpoint for voice calls.
In this initial release we have restricted webRTC access from within the Studio web portal.
We have also introduced a play task feature that allows you to test your task without the need to map phone numbers to your task. This is helpful for debugging and prototyping call flows.
- To access play task feature simply access the call flow canvas for any Voice Task.
- At the top right hand side of the canvas, select the green phone icon. This will start the test call and play through the task as if it were a live phone call including DTMF inputs.
- To end the test call press the hangup button or simply wait for the call flow to end.
Make sure you have a microphone set up to allow voice inputs to your call flow. Audio will be played back through your device speakers.
SMS short codes
SMS campaigns support the use of SMS short codes. Standard SMS numbers have a limit in terms of the number of SMSs that can be sent per second. Short codes allow you to send SMS messages in bulk at a rate of approximately 100 messages per second. This is ideal for running large list-based campaigns. All campaigns for messaging tasks in Studio 5.3 will automatically include the new speed.
Support for confusables
The Form Node has been extended to include support for confusables. If you have a custom form type you will have an option to save the speech recognition results in an array variable. This means if your form type has items that are similar sounding, you can get back all the matching items. Please refer to the resource center to learn how to use this feature.
Other features and improvements
Studio 5.3 supports utf-8 mb4 character set. This extends our support for character sets that use a maximum of 4 bytes per character such as emojis 💃🎉
PCI compliance has been extended to outbound calling.
Payment token has been exposed as a variable that can be used in external CRM system for setting up recurring payments.
A new Pause Node has been added. This node provides the ability to pause execution of a Studio voice task in order to synchronize prompts that may have been queued with any background activities that are being performed.
Dialogflow node has been extended to support version 2 APIs.
Workflow tasks can be published as templates.
The 'Make a Call' node has been renamed 'Trigger Campaign'. This node is available within both voice and messaging tasks.
Node logging has been extended to support additional nodes – Keyword Finder, Decision, Distribute, Play Complex Prompt, Trigger Campaign, Set Voice, Record.
Additional system variables have been exposed as part of the call flow – Region, POP, Service Provider Name, Account Name, and Task Name.
Studio has built-in support for predictive dialer campaigns.
Open Speech node supports a no match event handler.
Log data can be exported as a CSV file.
Payment Process node includes support for using any optional parameters that exist for a given payment gateway. This includes support for using any return parameters as well.
Show password option has been added for the password field within Integration node.
Workflows have a “Run now” action to test them from within the Studio web portal.
We have introduced a “Protect task” feature that will ensure that live tasks cannot be updated or deleted accidentally.
New service provider and account level APIs have been added to create new accounts, allocate credits, add service numbers, and create new users. Refer to the resource center for more information.
- Several identical messages are displayed when resetting password.
- Unable to select IntelliSMS profile in IntelliSMS node.
- A popup in Change my password is closed too quickly.
- Unable to set an empty value for an additional field in Form type.
- Assigning a campaign called id in on-demand campaigns is very slow with a large number of phone numbers mapped to an account.
- Unable to link a node.
- Campaign controller has extra page width.
- No validation for wrong sender email when adding an email profile.
- QforMe does not check if a trunk exists before returning a waiter.
- The “Click here to listen” link in edit prompt of QforMe does not downoad the audio for listening.
- When we click on reset “Assigned waiters”, the progress bar does not reset itself.
- After deleting queues, fields are not cleared.
Studio 5.2 offers Open Speech functionality allowing you to transcribe user utterances and store the transcribed text as variables. We currently supports two speech platforms – Google Cloud and IBM Watson. You simply select the platform of your choice, configure your user prompts and Studio will do the rest!
Natural Language Processing
The Keyword Finder node makes it easy to match keywords or extract information such as email addresses and account numbers from unstructured text. The Dialogflow node simplifies the process of using the Google Dialogflow service by offering a visual interface to access your Dialogflow agents.
Secure Channel (HIPAA)
Studio 5.2 is HIPAA compliant. If you have a need to protect health information that you collect from your users, you can create HIPAA compliant tasks. Simply enable the HIPAA compliant option when you create a new task and Studio will ensure that your task is executed in a secure environment that has been certified HIPAA compliant.
HIPAA Compliance Requirements
- Note that Studio provides a platform for you to create HIPAA compliant tasks.
As a Studio user, it is your responsibility to follow these requirments to ensure that your task is HIPAA compliant.
- Studio provides a secure channel for you to capture patient health information (PHI) and transmit it to the relevant organisation. Studio does not provide a mechanism to store patient information within its data center. Therefore, it is important that you never store PHI in Studio using the Datastore, Table, or Log nodes.
- Always use task-level variables to capture PHI. Never use global variables when capturing sensitive PHI data.
You are free to use the standard Form or Menu node to capture PHI data from the user.
- When sending sensitive data to third-party CRM systems, make sure that the APIs are secure and they use some form of authentication (Basic, OAuth, etc).
- Do not use PHI data in conjunction with Open Speech or Dialog Flow nodes as it will break compliance.
Enabling Secure Channel (HIPAA)
- From the Task settings page select the Secure Channel (HIPAA) toggle at the bottom of the page.
- Select Save.
- From the Tasks page, any task that is using the Secure Channel will have the padlock icon next to the task name.
Bulk Phone Numbers Map/Unmap
The phone number controller within Studio has been extended to support bulk mapping and un-mapping of phone numbers. This feature is also supported via Studio APIs.
- From the Studio Portal, under Home in the top menu select Phone Numbers.
- From the List Phone Numbers page, click the Bulk Move button.
- From the Actions section, choose whether to wish to Bulk Map or Bulk Unmap numbers via the radio button.
- You can also Download Existing Mapped Phone Number List as a CSV to modify if applicable.
- To upload the Phone Number list that would like to Map or Unmap you can select the Browse button or simply drop the CSV file onto the page.
- Once you have provide the CSV number list you will need to select the Account/ Tasks where you would like to Map/Unmap the numbers.
- Finally, select the Map/Unmap Phone Numbers button.
Other features and improvements
- We have changed our terminology in Studio. IVR scripts and SMS scripts are now referred to as Voice tasks and Messaging tasks respectively. Connect module has been renamed as Campaign to closely align with its functionality. The acronym TTS has been expanded to Text – To – Speech.
- Minor changes to Studio UI to reflect the new terminology and also improve usability. We have added two new node categories – Webservice category that includes all the built-in integrations such as Cisco Spark and DialogFlow along with the integration node and a Messaging category that includes all the messaging specific nodes such as Send SMS and Reply SMS.
- A new data structure called “Arrays” has been introduced in Studio. Arrays are useful when you need to capture and store a list of items. Arrays can be useful when an external webservice returns multiple items and you need access to all the items returned. Learn more.
- The repeat frequency for always on workflows can now be configured – starting from 10 seconds up to 24 hours.
- Expression builder supports two new mathematical functions to round decimal numbers – Floor and Ceil. Two other functions have been added to support the use of Arrays – Get.Array.Length and Get.Array.Element. Check the docs for more details on how to use these functions.
- Table Lookup node supports the use of greater-than (>), less-than (<) and not-equal- to (!=) operators when defining the search query.
- Default time period when defining a holiday schedule is now one day.
- Integration node supports the use of variables for the username and password fields.
- Integration node supports http 302 redirects to locations protected by authentication.
- Expression builder now supports the use of certain reserved characters.Learn more.
- Menu node supports the use of star (*) key as one of the DTMF options.
- Datastore webhook functionality has been extended to support all data types. Whenever any data is either inserted or updated via a voice or messaging task, a message is posted to the pre-configured webhook URL.
- Live sessions view has been updated to include the following information – call id, ANI, DNIS, call duration.
- Studio supports an option to purge data from the log table that is older than a certain date. You can select the log retention period and Studio will ensure that your log table is cleaned up Accordingly.
- First Data (Pay Ezeey) and Pay Trace payment gateways have been integrated with Studio and will be available in the US region. Learn more.
- Record node has been updated to support voice transcription.
- Tasks have access to additional system variables – Region, POP, Service Provider Name, Service
- Provider Id, Account Name, Account Id, Task Name, Task Id.
- Workflow Email node can now send raw data of datastore logs as a CSV attachment.
- Studio has a direct link to go to the support ticket portal. Click on user profile tab and then select the Help link.
- Improved canvas rendering performance for task flow editor.
- XSI module has been redesigned to make it fully distributed.
- SMS sending rate for outbound campaigns has been significantly increased.
- Datastore APIs have been updated to include support for searching specific information and updating selective information.
- Phone number APIs have been added to support bulk mapping, un-mapping and moving phone numbers from tasks. Learn more
Bug fixes 🐛
- Several identical messages are displayed when resetting password.
- Disabled service number icon does not exist.
- Deleting a node or a branch does not clarify if the user is deleting a node or a branch.
- Cannot disable transcription option in a datastore table.
- Datastore details are not displayed in the Table Lookup node.
- Unable to delete all the audio variables in Send Mail for a Voice task.
- Navigation arrows for max active session report are not displayed in MS Edge browser.
- URL variable in a Record node is not copied when a task is exported and imported back into Studio.
- Unable to save Form and Menu node when deleting an existing no match or no input prompt.
- Files sent by Workflow’s Email Report node do not have proper extensions.
- Tropo voice tasks that have a loop can cause an issue with an incoming SMS message.
Improved script creation workflow
Studio 5.1 introduces an improved workflow for creating IVR & SMS scripts. Providing a better user experience and allowing access to the powerful Studio App Library.
Any time you create a new script Studio will walk you through the four main ways you can create a call flow.
Studio App Library
When creating a new script you have the option to choose a ready-made script from the Studio App Library. These apps can serve as a great starting place for your final script and bring a lot of functionality 'out-of-the-box.'
- Select App Library from the script creation screen.
- Select the App you wish to use and click Next.
- The Script settings is the same as previous versions but with a refreshed interface. You can now toggle on/off AMD detection etc.
<img src="/images/logo/new_script.png" style="width:40em"">
You can now save scripts as different versions and restore to any previously saved version. This provides security when updating scripts with new enhancements or testing changes to your call flow.
- From the call flow edit screen select the vertical ellipses "More Options" icon at the top right hand side of the canvas. From here you can vew your Version History and Save Version. If you have not yet saved a version then your version history will be empty.
- Select Save Version.
- On the following popup menu you can add a note to your version. This is helpful to give context for each of your versions but is not compulsory. Each Saved Version will automatically have a name associated with the script name (in this case "welcome") as well as a timestamp.
Select Version History from the more options menu.
You will see the recently saved version and the message we added earlier.
From the Version History page you can also restore to any of your Saved Versions. As a backup safety measure, any time you restore to a Saved Version, Studio will automatically save the current state of your callflow to a new version with the description Autosave. This is to ensure you don't lose any data during a restoration.
Studio App library
Studio templates are now available via the app library. When you create a new script and select the app library option, you will be provided with all the pre-built templates that you have access to. Apart from a name, templates now have an icon and an optional short description.
We have introduced script versioning in Studio. This feature allows you to save a version of a script at any point in time and roll back to a previously saved version of the script.
We have added the ability to transcribe recorded audio. Any recorded audio file that has been stored in Studio can be transcribed. Please note that this is a paid feature. Learn more.
Other features and improvements
- A service number controller has been introduced in Studio making it easy to map and un-map service numbers to scripts.
- An API has been added for service providers to upload service numbers to Studio.
- An API has been added to extract SMS logs. This is useful for billing and invoicing.
- Studio now supports the concept of list-based variables. These variables are useful to store data returned by an external webservice where the response could consist of multiple rows with elements nested within each row. The expression builder has been extended to extract data from a list-based variable.
- A new system variable has been added that returns the credit card number captured as part of a payment application. Only the first six and the last four digits are visible. The rest of the digits are masked.
- Service Providers can now restrict TTS languages that are available to certain accounts by creating custom language profiles.
- Conversation node supports delivery notification.
- WorldPay payment gateway has been added to our list of supported gateways.
Bug fixes 🐛
Text in Send Email node is not formatted correctly.
Incorrect error message when you enter a wrong passcode when 2FA is enabled.
Error when a Studio session times out and a user tries to refresh their browser tab.
Incorrect error message when PUT method was used to trigger an on-demand Workflow.
Unable to save a Form node when an event handler name was entered.
The variables used in a Distribute node are not displayed in the UI when the script is copied.
Incorrect error message is displayed when we save a Form or a Menu node without a Fallback prompt.
Service number is not displayed for an SMS script when it is open.
Unable to open a Table Lookup node if the datastore that is referenced has been deleted.
When opening a Form node additional text is displayed briefly.
2FA does not work for super service providers.
Empty fields are displayed in a Conversation node every time we edit the node leading to validation errors.
Unable to save a Datastore node if all the audio column values are not filled.
Unable to upload a logo for a service provider.
Datastore does not support inserting the value “0”.
Conversation node resets the value of a script-level variable to its default value.
Parameters once added to an Integration node are not removed even after deletion.
Payment variables used in a script are not copied to another script or a template.
Drag and drop call flow editor
We have completely re-designed the call flow editor with a drag and drop interface. The interface makes it easy to create and edit scripts. We have grouped all the nodes into different categories based on their functionality making it easy to find relevant nodes when building scripts. We have also introduced a new concept called Quick Nodes that provides quick access to your favourite nodes making it easy to build scripts.
Custom URL for Service Providers
Service Providers can setup a custom login page to access Inference Portal. This feature allows them to customise the login page with their logo and select a sub-domain of their choice. The feature can be configured by logging into Studio portal and updating your profile. Refer to the resource centre to learn more about this feature.
We have extended our SMS channel to support conversation mode. Using this feature, you can build SMS apps that can have a conversation with your end users. If a user responds within a pre-defined time, conversation mode provides the ability to continue the conversation and ask follow up questions or perform a different action. To learn more about conversation mode, follow the how-to guide in the resource centre.
The Node logging feature provides the ability to log call data without the need for a Log node. Once you enable Node logging on any script, Studio will log information about each call as it traverses through the different nodes and send that information to an external data warehouse (currently Google firebase in supported). Please note this feature is in beta and only a limited set of nodes are supported in this release. Refer to the resource centre for more information on how to use this feature, the supported nodes and the information logged.
Triggering a workflow will require Inference credits
Starting from Studio 5, workflows will be charged using Inference credits. If you are using workflows in your applications, please contact your service provider or Inference to purchase credits. A workflow reporting section has been added to access reports on your workflow usage.
Other features and improvements
- New string manipulation functions have been added to the expression builder to extract email addresses, phone numbers and keywords from strings.
- Payment functionality has been updated to support recurring payments. If a payment gateway supports recurring payments, the functionality can be used within Studio.
- SMS channel has been extended to support uft-8 encoding. This means you can build SMS applications that support different languages.
- On-demand campaign APIs supports optional parameters to include caller-id and display name for outbound calls.
- On-demand workflows triggered via an API support parameter passing.
- List script API supports an additional option to filter scripts based on script type – IVR/SMS/Workflow.
- Snapshots support an export to CSV option.
- Record node functionality has been extended to access the audio recording via a publicly accessible URL.
- Prompt handling within a Studio script has been improved to prevent script failure.
- Outbound calls that are queued as a result of an on-demand campaign can now be cleared from the Studio interface. A new item called “Clear Queue” has been added to the action list for on- demand campaigns.
- SMS channel supports delivery notification. For every SMS that is sent, you can receive delivery status notifications at a pre-configured URL. Please note that not all SMS numbers support this feature. If you wish to use this feature, contact Inference and request for SMS numbers that support this feature.
- Account Managers can access reports grouped by service provider.
- Uploading service numbers in bulk is capped at 10,000 records.
- Node reference documentation can be accessed directly from the call flow editor.
- Email alerts can be setup when Inference credit drops below a pre-defined threshold.
- Transfer node supports additional timeout options.
- Calendar node includes an option to assign a script-level variable the name of the holiday that triggered the holiday schedule.
- QForME agent script has been updated to support an option to place the call back in the queue?
- The UI for the user profile tab has been updated.
- A script search option has been added to the Max Active Sessions report.
- A new user role has been added called ‘Super service provider’. This allows managing multiple service providers from a single user account.
- A notification email is sent to Inference support whenever a Studio account is disabled.
- Play Prompt (Dynamic TTS) node has been deprecated. If you are using this node in your application, you should switch to a Complex prompt node.
- Payment node has been deprecated. If you are using the Payment node in your application, you should switch to the new payment method that was introduced in Studio 4.2. The new payment method offers flexibility around designing your payment application as it uses the regular form nodes for collecting credit card details and separates the payment processing into an easy to use Payment Processing node. To learn more on how to do PCI compliant payments, follow the how to guide in the resource centre.
- The old web theme (Classical theme) has been deprecated. If you are still using the classical theme, now is a good time to switch to the new theme which has a much better user interface that is updated regularly.
- Make a call node points to the same script causing an infinite loop.
- Numbers mapped to a script disappear if ASR resource is removed from the script.
- Chart is not formatted correctly when exported to Excel.
- Application search in List Trunks controller does not work as expected.
- Account list in service number controller is not sorted alphabetically.
- Disabled service providers should not be allowed to create new accounts.
- Return key does not work in alphanumeric form-type editor.
- Test URL text missing in Integration node.
- The outbound dial time setting is incorrectly displayed in List-based campaigns.
- When importing a workflow script, it shows a warning about missing TTS resource.
- Page validation missing for Go To page controller.
- Service provider name is not shown in the session alerts email.
- On-demand campaign API does not return an error message when a mandatory parameter is missing.
- Double quotes in legacy expression builder is causing an incorrect display.
- Studio stats app does not sync live session data for the selected account.
- Account level admin user cannot import a Studio script.
- Unable to copy a script from certain templates in US POP.
- An outbound call made using the call out feature is terminated when the call is answered.
- Monthly view option within session usage reporting is broken.
- Workflow script have duplicate decision nodes and child nodes created.
- SMS usage summary shows incorrect data for certain use cases.
We have introduced a new channel in Studio - SMS! You can create scripts that can be triggered by SMS messages and control the behaviour of your script using a variety of Studio nodes. SMS scripts will have access to all the standard background processing nodes such as Table Lookup, Integration, and Datastore. In addition, we have added two new nodes - Send SMS and Reply so that you can send an SMS to a third-party and respond back to the sender via a text message. Studio’s Connect module has been updated to support outbound SMS campaigns.
List-based campaigns can now be controlled via APIs. Using APIs you can now start and stop a campaign; upload phone numbers and passed parameters; and change the campaign schedule and after hours action.
QForMe application has been revamped and integrated within Studio making it easy to configure the application. You have access to QForMe features via two new nodes: QForMe - Check Waiter and QForMe - AddtoQ.
Other features and improvements
- Brand new expression builder with an improved UI and the ability to edit sub-expressions.
- Usage summary results can now be grouped by scripts within an account.
- Workflows can be triggered via APIs.
- Integration node has been extended to support Raw PUT requests.
- Studio accounts now support Account Manager functionality.
- New accounts need to be activated via email confirmation.
- A re-subscribe and unsubscribe option has been added for Broadsoft XSI subscriptions. This allows users to temporarily stop receiving events without having to make any changes to the script.
- A flexible method to process PCI compliant payments has been introduced. Apart from the existing * Payment Node, you can now collect sensitive data using the standard Form Node. A new category of Payment variables enable processing of sensitive data while being PCI compliant.
- Payment node has been updated to optionally enter a hash after entering the expiry date and CCV.
- Payment node now supports playing tapered confirmation prompts.
- A new API has been added to control custom form types. Using this API you can update the values of predefined custom form types.
- An option has been added to the Transfer node to select the timeout value.
- Email node has been upgraded to support multiple attachments.
- Fat Zebra payment gateway has been integrated within Studio.
- Record node and Record Prompt node timouts have been increased to support 5 minute recordings.
- A system email is generated every time a call is rejected by Studio.
- Default logo has been updated to the new Inference logo.
Bug fixes 🐛
- No role permission is set when a new user is created.
- Trunk entries are not deleted with a service provider is deleted.
- Search function in List Trunk Registrants does not work.
- A read only service provider user is able to upload a logo and change theme colours.
- Data store delete functionality is not validated.
- Outbound calls with the redial option set makes two outbound calls.
- Incorrect message in the delete script/workflow pop-up window.
- Graph label in Studio is not sorted in a numerical order.
- A semi-colon is displayed under the save button in Insert/Edit node.
- A template published by a service provider is available to all users.
- Prompt items table is not correctly cleared with “Delete” node is selected.
- Service provider users of a disabled service provider can enable service numbers of an account.
- Incorrect warning message is displayed when editing Form types.
- Roles displayed in Portal and Studio are different for users.
- Unable to insert data to a data store if the data store has audio rows.
- QForMe - If an agent does not select 1 to take the call, the callback does not stay in the queue.
- Event Handler is not triggered in Blind, Bridge, and ScreenPop transfer nodes.
- QForMe booking consumes two booking sessions.
- Variables do not work in Email Report node.