While the most discussed features of iOS 11.3 were the performance management and battery health tools, Apple also released a lot of new features in the update, such as Apple Business chatting. With this new extension, users can contact partner companies through the News app instead of having to wait for a customer service representative.
Business Chat is currently in beta and will appear. Only a handful of companies support this feature at the moment, and starting a chat is a bit shaky. It's still a promising feature, especially as there's a lot of competition in this area, from Facebook's bots and Google's chat program, and it's likely that Apple's version will be much more robust until the official launch of iOS 1
What can you do in Business Chat?
Like Google's RCS for Business initiative, Apple verifies companies so you can be confident that you're actually talking to a company representative you contact. Here are a few things you can do in business chat.
- Contact customer service
- Discuss account information with your bank after you have authenticated yourself in Business Chat
- Make purchases and pay for Apple Pay
- Arrange appointments
- Update your mobile plan
In short The functionality depends on the business itself. When you first contact a company, it does not receive any personal information, but you can choose to complete certain tasks and transactions. Apple's news app uses end-to-end encryption, meaning that business chat is a very secure option.
How to Set Up Business Chat
To use Business Chat, you need to do some things. First, you need to download the latest version of iOS. You can do this by tapping Settings> General> Software Update and following the instructions. Be warned, this process may take a while, so you want to make sure your phone is charged and you will not need it in the next few minutes. It's also a good idea to back up your iPhone or iPad to save your data.
If you are using the latest version of iOS, make sure iMessage is enabled by selecting Settings> Messages and switching the option to iMessage . You may be asked to create an Apple ID if you have not already done so.
How to Start a Business Chat
Starting a business chat is not as easy as opening your news app and finding a business, of course we hope the functionality comes with iOS 12. Here are a few ways to start a business chat:
Perhaps the easiest way to start a business chat is to use Spotlight Search. To open the Spotlight search, you can either swipe right to Today view or swipe down from the Home screen. In Spotlight Search, enter the name of the company you want to contact. Here is a list of different options. Touch the message icon under Business or Maps .
Spotlight search is the easiest way to start a business chat, but it's not always work. We were more fortunate to find the chat option in the Google Maps app. To start a business chat on the Google Maps app, just tap the Maps icon and search for the business you want. Once you find a place nearby, tap it; You'll see how long it usually takes for the company to respond to messages. Swipe up and click on the Message icon to start a business chat.
While Apple states that you can initiate a business chat through Siri, we were unable to support the virtual assistant. When we called Siri to initiate a business chat with verified businesses, she either set up reminders or showed locations near a business without providing an option to send a message. Since Business Chat is still in the beta phase, we are giving away this option for the time being. Once this method works properly, we will update this story.
Online / App
The last way to start a business chat is either finding a store in Safari or tapping the News icon in supported applications
How to quit A Business Chat
Business chats do not end when you stop chatting with the company – the conversation stays open in case you need help again. To end a conversation and remove the thread from your app, go to the main Messages screen, swipe left in the conversation, and tap Delete. Once you have successfully deleted a thread, a message appears asking if you no longer want to receive messages from the company.
Currently, only a few large companies support business chat. However, we assume that this list will be expanded in the coming months. Since Apple requires companies to use certain customer service platforms with the service, it is unlikely that you will see the business with this feature in the near future.
Here is a list of companies currently supporting Business Chat:
- Home Depot
- 1-800-Flowers 
- Marriott International
- Wells Fargo
- TD Ameritrade
- Four Seasons
- Harry and David
The most recent list The companies that support Business Chat can be found on this page.