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Question answering

Distill information into conversational, easy-to-navigate answers

Quickly create a conversational layer over your data

Create a conversational question-and-answer layer over your existing data with question answering, an Azure Cognitive Service for Language feature. Build a knowledge base by adding unstructured documents or extracting questions and answers from your semi-structured content, including FAQ, manuals, and documents. Get the best answers from the questions and answers in your knowledge base—automatically. Your knowledge base gets smarter, too, as it continually learns from user behaviour.

Automatic question-answer extraction from semi-structured content, including FAQ, product manuals, guidelines, support documents, and policies

Knowledge base with suggestions for alternative questions. Add or reject them based on their relevance

Complex multiturn conversations can be easily created, edited, and trained in the new language studio or REST APIs

Bots can be created and published without code experience. Simply upload a semi-structured document or URL

Add personality to your bot using chit-chat

Make your bot more conversational by adding a pre-populated chit-chat dataset. Choose a persona that’s professional, witty, friendly, caring, or enthusiastic.

Learn more about chit-chat

Support rich data and dynamically manage content

Add rich content to your knowledge base with built-in rich text editor. Use Mark-down’s full capability to author answers directly or upload a knowledge base that includes rich content.

Learn about rich content

Scale to meet your business and compliance needs

Question answering is a hosted model. Choose product tiers according to your size and throughput needs, and feel confident knowing all components are within your Azure compliance boundary.

Learn about question answering architecture

Leverage both customised and prebuilt capabilities

Use customised question answering to edit information extracted from the source content, define synonyms and metadata, accept question suggestions, and more. Use prebuilt question answering to extract relevant answers from a given passage of text without having the need to create knowledge bases nor manage additional storage.

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Enterprise-grade security

Create a knowledge base

Easily add your existing data sources when creating a knowledge base from FAQ pages, product manuals, and other semi-structured or unstructured documents.

Test and deploy a knowledge base

Test your knowledge base through an enhanced chat interface, and then iterate to improve the accuracy of your responses. After thorough testing, deploy your knowledge base to make it available as a question-answering endpoint to a client application.

Create a bot

After publishing the knowledge base, create a conversational bot and get started.

Create a feedback loop

Use active learning to improve the quality of your knowledge base. Generate alternative questions based on user submissions. Review those suggestions and add or reject them based on their relevance.

Get pricing details

See pricing for Azure Cognitive Service for Language. When you create a question answering project, you host the data in your own Azure Cognitive Search. View pricing for Azure Cognitive Search.

Everything you need to get started

Get instant access and a $200 credit by signing up for an Azure free account.

Learn how to build a bot with quickstarts and documentation.

Enhance question answering with additional features and products, like security and back up services.

Documentation and resources

Explore code samples

Sample code

Customisation resources

Language studio

See how trusted companies are using question answering, a feature of Language service

Accenture eases the way for new hires

"QnA Maker enabled Accenture to build corpus at speed to quickly launch an HR chatbot for 100,000-plus people. We were able to leverage QnA Maker and LUIS to build our conversation hierarchy, getting us the best of both."

Sangita Agarwal Managing Director, Human Resources Technology Platforms, Accenture

Spanish telco builds digital assistant

"Using Bot Service and Cognitive Services, such as Language Understanding and the Azure QnA Maker API, made it easy for our developers to put an advanced, conversational experience in the hands of our customers very fast."

Antonio Guzman Head of Innovation, Aura, Telefonica

Insurance shoppers engage with AI chatbot

"By using Azure Bot Service and Cognitive Services, such as Language Understanding and QnA Maker, we've been able to continue our own Progressive journey of digital innovation, and do it in an agile, fast, and cost-effective way."

Matt White Marketing Manager, Personal Lines Acquisition Experience, Progressive Insurance

Frequently asked questions about question answering

  • Question answering introduces several new features including enhanced relevance using a deep learning ranker, support for unstructured documents as a data source, ability to generate precise answers, and end-to-end region support.
  • All delete operations within question answering are permanent, including question-and-answer pairs, files, URLs, knowledge bases, and Azure resources. Be certain to export your knowledge base before deleting any part of it.
  • Follow the instructions in the documentation to create a bot with question answering.
  • Question answering supports multiple languages. Create a knowledge base in multiple languages in a single language resource.

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