(Bloomberg) – Frustrated with automated answeringmachines before you finally get to speak with a customer servicerepresentative?

When it comes to insurance, you'll just as likely end up dealingwith a robot as a human within three years, according to asurvey by Accenture Plc.

About two-thirds of insurers already use artificialintelligence-based "virtual assistants," the consultingfirm said in the report, which was published on Wednesday. Of theexecutives who took part in the survey, 85 percent said they planto invest "significantly" in AI in the next three years.

More automation to cut costs

"It's coming pretty quickly," John Cusano, global head ofAccenture's insurance practice, said in a telephone interview. "Oneof the first services to be managed differently will be routineinquiries about the status of claims or bills, which in the pasthave been handled by call centers."

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