While the most discussed features of iOS 11.3 have been the performance management and battery health tools, Apple also released a bevy of new features in the update such as Apple Business Chat. This new addition allows users to hit up partnered companies through the Messages app, instead of waiting on hold to talk to a customer service representative.

Business Chat is currently in beta, and it shows. Only a handful of companies are supporting this feature at the moment, and starting a chat is a little wonky. It’s still a feature that holds a lot of promise, especially since there is a lot of competition in this space from the likes of Facebook’s bots and Google’s Chat program, and it’s likely Apple’s version will become much more robust by the time iOS 12 officially launches in the fall.

WHAT CAN YOU DO ON BUSINESS CHAT?
Like Google’s RCS for Business initiative, Apple verifies businesses so you can trust that you’re actually talking to a representative from the business you’re contacting. Here are a few things you can do in Business Chat.
  • Contact customer service
  • Discuss account information with your bank after authenticating in Business Chat
  • Make purchases and pay via Apple Pay
  • Make appointments
  • Update your mobile plan
In short, functionality depends on the business itself. When you initially contact a business, it doesn’t receive any personal information, but you can opt to provide it to complete certain tasks and transactions. Apple’s Messages app uses end-to-end encryption, which means Business Chat is a very safe option.

To use Business Chat, you need to do a few things. First, you need to download the latest version of iOS. You can do that by tapping . Be warned, this process can take a while so you want to make sure that your phone is charged and that you won’t need it for the next few minutes. It’s also a good idea to backup your iPhone or iPad to save your data.

Once you’re running the latest version of iOS, make sure you have iMessage turned on by going to Settings > Messages and toggling on the iMessage option. You may be prompted to create an Apple ID if you haven’t done so already.