As of late, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become a buzz word in the tech industry. Whenever we hear the term, we think back to the days of watching the movie ‘’Smart House’’ on the Disney Channel. Now, we are having nightmares that a robot is going to try to control our life. Before our dreams turn into the sequel of iRobot, let’s get clear on what “AI” really is and what it can do for businesses.
Most people were not very familiar with the concept of AI. For example, when 1,500 senior business leaders in the United States in 2017 were asked about AI, only 17 percent said they were familiar with it. A number of them were not sure what it was or how it would affect their particular companies. They understood there was considerable potential for altering business processes, but were not clear how AI could be deployed within their own organizations.
AI isn’t a new term; it was first used by Alan Turing around 1950. It refers to using machines to simulate or do ‘intelligent’ things – things that would normally be done be by people, using their cognitive faculties. The use of AI has accelerated in recent years (and continues to do so).
During the last years, the rise of AI has been truly astounding. The global AI market size was valued at USD 39.9 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 42.2% from 2020 to 2027.
Although AI is becoming more popular among people around the world, many others still believe these applications to be too complex or too dangerous. Thousands of people think that robots have come to conquer the world and destroy the humanity. At the same time, many people dream of seeing a new reality around them. They want to see more robots and machines doing regular tasks. One should not fear that people will lose their jobs due to the growing number of robots. Although some jobs are becoming obsolete, more people are needed to provide service and maintenance functions and keep these systems running. Unfortunately, it will take a great deal of time and money to teach robots do the human job. It will also be difficult to get used to the omnipresence of robots that lack human intelligence and feelings.
AI and business
AI is continuing its migration out of the research lab and into the world of business. Its impact on business has been tremendous. Companies get puzzled by such a huge amount of data volume generated by users, tools, and processors. For this reason, traditional methods have started failing. Spreadsheets and dashboards are now replaced by AI-powered tools that look for in-sight data and then make auto-recommendations. Also, this software helps change the way companies are using data and making decisions.
Advantages of AI to businesses
Many companies already recognize the advantages of AI-based systems. Here are some:
- Real-time analytics
For a business, one of the best advantages of AI for business is processing and interpreting the huge amount of data in real-time. This approach allows businesses to make critical decisions and act at a faster rate, ensuring a strong competitive position of the company. For example, in the transportation industry, drivers could get data on traffic jams based on their location and promptly adjust their routes.
- Better customer experience
The best part is that machines never sleep so there will be 24-hour support for the customer. AI based chatbots are capable of providing shorter response times and better interaction quality that will help companies increase existing customers’ loyalty and attract new ones.
- Data security improvement
Areas where data privacy is of significant importance, like the financial sector, banking services, AI can successfully be used in the detection of fraud and unauthorized access to personal data.
AI is capable of managing the automation of both service delivery and production operations. For example, control and maintenance of necessary environmental conditions for storage of product, managing robotic lines in factories, process payments, monitor warehouse balances, register service customer requests, and more.
Examples of AI applications in use today
Here are examples of the applications of AI in business in five industries that affect our day-to-day living.
The auto-pilot feature of an airplane, the way ride sharing applications connect you to the drivers, and the way your mobile phone maps give you your exact estimated time or arrival, are all AI.
Your mobile phone’s security feature has evolved from simply asking for a 4-digit PIN, to programming your fingerprint and recently, facial recognition. Even your mobile banking, money remittance, and shopping applications incorporate AI.
- Social media
Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms identify who you should tag on your photos. Their AI shows you ads of stores near you, will recommend people you may know, and will suggest feeds relevant to you.
Don’t you just love how Spotify, YouTube and Netflix remember the genre of music and videos that you enjoy? AI automatically sorts your favorites into “Recommended for You”, “Daily Mix” and more.
Predictive texts, auto-correct, auto-fill, chatbots, language translation, auto-responders are among the AI-powered features in the field of communication.
What the future holds for AI and Business?
Here are areas of business operations where AI will continue to grow in usefulness.
Online shopping just became more fun. Upon searching for a particular product, the algorithm of your favorite shopping site automatically offers you the product you are looking for a similar product you may want to consider. Its algorithm maps the keywords, imagery, and other information to provide you the best possible options.
- Workplace management
Scheduled emails, meeting schedulers, and project management applications are among the tools that make an employee’s life easier. It offers time-saving convenience and allows employees to focus on more productive and creative tasks rather than spending time on mundane tasks.
From the simplest task of finding specialists, laboratories, specialty clinics within your location and up to the most sensitive robotic intervention on the most delicate surgeries, AI has played an important role in the field of healthcare. More doctors believe that in the coming years, AI will enable real-time discussion and information sharing that will prevent medical malpractices and misdiagnosis.
- Internet security
Have you ever travelled out of the country, tried logging in to your email, but had it flagged as suspicious activity? Since AI analyzes behavior, your sudden transfer to a new location tells the system that it might not be you who is accessing the email. Similarly, the banking industry has become more accessible through the availability or mobile and internet banking, yet is more sensitive to any unusual activity.
- Supply chain and logistics
With consumer data analytics, order and delivery systems are more efficient. As shopping becomes easier, manufacturing and delivery also need to keep up. Centralization of information requires big data and when there is big data, there is AI to quickly manage it.
To sum it up, technologies make up a big part of lives in many humans, no matter whether they live in the United States or in Armenia. Everyone knows what the Internet is and how it works. However, even the most advanced AI intelligence applications cannot replace humans. The latter should assume full responsibility for their daily decisions and actions. At the same time, the advantages of AI should not be manipulated or abused to achieve the desired result. Humans are here to make this world better, and AI is nothing but a supplementary component of this continuous progress.