Hey Andrew! Good to hear from you. I saw your CEO demo at a Bot meetup recently — nice work! Didn’t know you were behind that.
To answer your question, yes I’m counting on the costs going down. I feel like there’s more value to these companies in the data you send to them, than the value of subscription fees. I think this will be especially true once the big players get involved (Amazon, Google, Facebook, etc.). In fact, Facebook bought Wit.ai and the service is currently free to use, even for commercial purposes.
I haven’t done any homegrown NLP, I think it is a big enough problem that warrants a dedicated team of its own — which I don’t think is feasible for startups.