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Artificial Intelligence

John McCarthy coined the term in 1956. The modern definition of artificial
intelligence (or AI) is Artificial intelligence (AI) is an area of computer science
that emphasizes the creation of intelligent machines that work and react like
humans. Some of the activities computers with artificial intelligence are designed
to include:

 Speech recognition
 Learning
 Planning
 Problem solving

The Predictions

 Worldwide revenue from artificial intelligence-based systems is expected to grow from

$8 billion this year to more than $47 billion in 2020, according to IDC.
 AI investment is growing fast, dominated by digital giants such as Google and Baidu.
Globally, we estimate tech giants spent $20 billion to $30 billion on AI in 2016, with 90 percent
of this spent on R&D and deployment, and 10 percent on AI acquisitions according to
Analysing the various sectors

1.Health Care
1 – Disease Identification/Diagnosis

In October 2016, IBM Watson Health announced IBM Watson Genomics, a partnership initiative with
Quest Diagnostics, which aims to make strides in precision medicine by integrating cognitive
computing and genomic tumor sequencing.

Boston-based biopharma company Berg is using AI to research and develop diagnostics and
therapeutic treatments in multiple areas, including oncology.

Other major examples include Google’s DeepMind Health, which last year announced multiple UK-
based partnerships, including with Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, in which they’re developing
technology to address macular degeneration in aging eyes.

2 – Personalized Treatment/Behavioral Modification

Personalized medicine, or more effective treatment based on individual health data paired with
predictive analytics, is also a hot research area and closely related to better disease assessment.
McKinsey estimates that big data and machine learning in pharma and
medicine could generate a value of up to $100B annually, based on better
decision-making, optimized innovation, improved efficiency of research/clinical
trials, and new tool creation for physicians, consumers, insurers, and regulators.

Applications of Machine Learning in Pharma and Medicine

1 – Disease Identification/Diagnosis

Disease identification and diagnosis of ailments is at the forefront of ML research

in medicine. According to a 2015 report issued by Pharmaceutical Research and
Manufacturers of America, more than 800 medicines and vaccines to treat cancer
were in trial.In October 2016, IBM Watson Health announced IBM Watson
Genomics, a partnership initiative with Quest Diagnostics, which aims to make
strides in precision medicine by integrating cognitive computing and genomic
tumor sequencing.

Boston-based biopharma company Berg is using AI to research and develop

diagnostics and therapeutic treatments in multiple areas, including oncology.
Current research projects underway include dosage trials for intravenous tumor
treatment and detection and management of prostate cancer.

Other major examples include Google’s DeepMind Health, which last year
announced multiple UK-based partnerships, including with Moorfields Eye Hospital
in London, in which they’re developing technology to address macular
degeneration in aging eyes.
Microsoft’s Project Hanover is using ML technologies in multiple initiatives,
including a collaboration with the Knight Cancer Institute to develop AI technology
for cancer precision treatment

3– Smart Electronic Health Records

Document classification (sorting patient queries via email, for example) using
support vector machines, and optical character recognition (transforming cursive
or other sketched handwriting into digitized characters), are both essential ML-
based technologies in helping advance the collection and digitization of electronic
health information. MATLAB’s ML handwriting recognition technologies
and Google’s Cloud Vision API for optical character recognition are just two
examples of innovations in this area:

4– Epidemic Outbreak Prediction

ML and AI technologies are also being applied to monitoring and predicting

epidemic outbreaks around the world, based on data collected from satellites,
historical information on the web, real-time social media updates, and other
Also, Verily, the life sciences arm of Google’s umbrella corporation, Alphabet
is working on its genetic data-collecting initiative, the Baseline Study. It aims to
use some of the same algorithms that power Google’s famous search button in
order to analyse what makes people healthy.

2) IBM WatsonPaths

IBM Watson launched a project called WatsonPaths consists of two cognitive

computing technologies that can be used by the AI algorithm, Watson, which are
expected to help physicians make more informed and accurate decisions faster
and to cull new insights from electronic medical records (EMR).


Insurers can devise new ways to encourage preventive care and incentivize
providers The ability of machine learning technologies to predict patient behavior
and calculate disease probabilities better than current methods will lift the
profitability of life- and healthinsurance providers. New business models can use
AI combined with behavioral health interventions to focus on prevention, disease
management, and wellness—addressing unhealthy behaviors before people
become patients. A South African insurer, Discovery Health, tracks the diet and
fitness activity of people it insures and offers incentives for healthy behaviors.73
AI also will encourage new partnerships among payers, providers, and pharma
companies and will facilitate pay-for-performance models that will accelerate the
shift toward preventive care. Payers may become more involved in care
management or encourage their providers to do so by introducing contract
models based on risks uncovered by machine learning or the potential for AI-
based risk-management modeling.

Improving Efficiencies – AI is already improving efficiencies in customer

interaction and conversion ratios, reducing quote-to-bind and FNOL-to-claim
resolution times, and increasing new product speed-tomarket. These efficiencies
are the result of AI techniques speeding up decision-making (e.g., automating
underwriting, auto-adjudicating claims, automating financial advice, etc.). •
Improving Effectiveness – Because of the increasing sophistication of its
decision-making capabilities, AI soon will improve target prospects in order to
convert them to customers, refine risk assessment and risk-based pricing,
enhance claims adjustment, and more. Over time, as AI systems learn from their
interactions with the environment and with their human masters, they are likely
to become more effective than humans and replace them. Advisors, underwriters,
call center representatives, and claims adjusters likely will be most at risk. •
Improving Risk Selection & Assessment – AI’s most profound impact could well
result from its ability to identify trends and emerging risks, and assess risks for
individuals, corporations, and lines of business. Its ability to help carriers develop
new sources of revenue from risk and non-risk based information also will be




Some of the applications of robotics and AI that got the widest media coverage
are listed below. Most of these are chatbots or digital assistants, either cloud-
based or in the shape of robots and humanoids. Other applications are related to
back-end operations or fraud prevention.
 Luvo (RBS) and Erica (Bank of America) - text and voice chatbots to help clients
with routine operations and mobile banking;
 Nao (Bank of Tokyo) - multilingual assistant (19 languages) that also has camera
and microphone capabilities;
 Smark Bank (Santander U.K.) - an app that allows clients to use natural language
to manage their account and get some financial counseling regarding spending;
 COiN Contract Intelligence (JPMorgan Chase) - analyzes documents and extracts
relevant clauses;
 Barclays Bank and Piraeus Bank Romania - risk monitorization, fraud detection,
loan processing, drastically reducing the waiting time for applications;
 ICICI Bank - relies on robots to perform back-end operations.
JPMorgan Chase

JPMorgan Chase has invested in technology and recently introduced a Contract

Intelligence (COiN) platform designed to “analyze legal documents and extract
important data points and clauses.” Manual review of 12,000 annual commercial
credit agreements normally requires approximately 360,000 hours. Results from an
initial implementation of this machine learning technology showed that the same
amount of agreements could be reviewed in seconds

Wells Fargo

In April, the company began piloting an AI-driven chatbot through the Facebook
Messenger platform with “several hundred employees.” This virtual assistant
communicates with users to provide account information and helps customers
reset their passwords.

Bank of America

Bank of America Corporation recently made a bold push into AI technology with
the debut of an intelligent virtual assistant named erica which is a chatbot
leveraging “predictive analytics and cognitive messaging” to provide financial
guidance to the company’s over 45 million customers.


, Citibank has recently established a succession of innovative partnerships with

cutting edge tech companies to expand and improve its services. Through its
investment and acquisitions wing, Citi Ventures, CitiBank has made a strategic
investmentin Feedzai, a leading global data science enterprise that works in real-
time to identify and eradicate fraud in all avenues of commerce including online
and in-person banking..

 Smart Wallets
Digital wallets are billed in most tech circles as the future of real-world payment
technologies. With major players like Google, Apple, Paypal and others jumping on
the bandwagon and developing their own mobile-first payment technologies, it
appears to be a safe bet. Smart wallets – a more evolved version – are on the
horizon. Smart wallets monitor and learn users’ habits and needs. They alert and
coach users wherever appropriate, to show restraint and to alter their personal
finance spending and saving behavior.

 Voice Assisted Banking

Barclays is currently developing a technology that will enable users to carry out
money transfers by talking to a robot computer system. The AI system will be
similar to Apple’s iPhone personal assistant, Siri.

 Wealth Management for clients

The purpose is to detect “typical” behavioral patterns. These experts are hoping
to build AI engines, which can provide insights on how to best service their high-
net-worth clients.

 Customer support
As speech processing and natural language processing technologies mature, we
are drawing closer to the day, when computers could handle most customer
service queries. This would mark an end to waiting in line and hence result in
happier customers.

 Reducing Fraud and Fighting Crime

AI tools, which learn and monitor behavioral patterns of users to identify
anomalies and warning signs of fraud attempts and occurrences, along with
collection of evidence necessary for conviction, are also becoming more
commonplace in fighting crime.

Smart cities

Improving cities is a pressing global need as the world’s population grows and our
species becomes rapidly more urbanized. In 1900 just 14 percent of people on
earth lived in cities but by 2008 half the world’s population lived in urban areas,
and the rate continues to grow. There were just 83 cities on earth with more than
one million residents in 1950, while as of last year there were 512 such cities. In
the United States, 3.5 percent of the land now holds 62.7 percent of Americans.

AI Learns How People Use Cities

Cities have wealth of possible data sources, such as ticket sales on mass transit,
local tax information, police reports, sensors on roads and local weather stations.
One huge source of raw data that AI pattern recognition technology is making
significantly more manageable is video and photos. NVIDIA predicts that by 2020
there will be 1 billion cameras deployed on government property, infrastructure,
and on commercial buildings.

That is far more raw data than could ever be viewed, processed, or analyzed by
humans. This is why only a small fraction of cameras are ever actively monitored
by people. This is where deep learning comes in. It can count vehicles and
pedestrians. It can read license plates and recognize faces. It can track the speed
and movements of millions of vehicles to establish patterns. It can process the
huge volume of satellite data to count cars in a parking lot or track road use.

To help cities handle this torrent of video NVIDIA launched Metropolis, their
intelligent video analytics platform. NVIDIA has over 50 AI city partner companies
providing products and applications that use deep learning on GPUs.

Similarly, AT&T launched their Smart Cities framework in 2015 and formed
alliances with Cisco, Deloitte, Ericsson, GE, IBM, Intel, and Qualcomm. Earlier this
year AT&T announced a deal to be the exclusive reseller of GE Current’s
intelligent sensor nodes for connecting cities — a significant deal since GE just
announced it will provide San Diego with largest smart city Internet of Things (IoT)
sensor platform. There are a huge volume of applications of AI with IoT (some of
which we’ve covered here on TechEmergence), but few opportunities match the
massive scale of smart cities.

GE is going to start by installing 3,200 CityIQ sensor nodes throughout the city and
may expand that to over 6,000. The data can be used to identify parking spots for
drivers, help first responders, and identify dangerous intersections.

A straightforward application of machine processing video for cities is license

plate recognition (LPR), which is used in numerous ways. For example, since 2014
the City of Galveston has been using the company gtechna’s Pay by Plate number
parking system. Instead of traditional analog meters, people can pay by phone and
LPR technology verifies who is parked legally.

Similar parking systems are in use in multiple cities and by large private
institutions, which are almost mini cities unto themselves. Stanford University
uses VIMOC Technologies’ LPR system in its parking lots to quickly check if
vehicles parked there have the right permits.

AI Optimizing Infrastructure for Cities

Waze, acquired by Google back in 2013, uses its network of drivers to provide real
time data about traffic and accidents to help individuals optimize their routes.
Cities are also trying to improve the situation from their end

Smart Parking Garages

VIMOC is using AI to make parking easier in Redwood City. The company installed
vehicle detection and reporting in two of the city’s large parking garages. The
amount of available parking is displayed outside the garages on large LED signs
and shared with an open platform for use by app developers. It provides the
immediate benefit letting individuals know where parking is available, and in the
long term, the wealth of data collected will allow the city to make planning and
pricing decisions.

Adaptive Signal Control Technologies

Adaptive Signal Control Technology allows traffic lights to change their timing
based on real time data. According to the Department of Transportation (DOT),
“On average [Adaptive Signal Control Technology] improves travel time by more
than 10 percent there is a strong reason why numerous cities and companies are
deploying this technology around the country.

San Diego installed 12 Adaptive Traffic Systems along one of its busiest corridors
last fall and found they “reduced travel time by as much as 25 percent and
decreased the number of vehicle stops by up to 53 percent during rush hour

Similarly, in 2012 the company Surtrac first deployed intelligent traffic signals at
nine intersections in downtown Pittsburgh. It reduced travel times by more than
25% on average and wait times by 40% on average.
Connected Public Transit Technology

This technology allows buses and trains to communicate with each other and the
general public. Letting individuals know when buses or trains are coming and if
they are going to run late makes them more useful to individuals.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority was the first agency to make bus
locations and arrival-time predictions available, allowing developers to create
tracking apps. Research on the impact of real time information on bus ridership in
New York City found that it increased weekday route-level ridership by 1.7%.

1. Artificial intelligence can automate basic activities in education, like grading.

It’s now possible for teachers to automate grading for nearly all kinds of multiple
choice and fill-in-the-blank testing and automated grading of student writing may
not be far behind
2. Educational software can be adapted to student needs.

These systems respond to the needs of the student, putting greater emphasis on
certain topics, repeating things that students haven’t mastered, and generally
helping students to work at their own pace, whatever that may be.

This kind of custom tailored education could be a machine-assisted solution to

helping students at different levels work together in one classroom, with teachers
facilitating the learning and offering help and support when needed. Adaptive
learning has already had a huge impact on education across the nation
(especially through programs like Khan Academy), and as AI advances in the
coming decades adaptive programs like these will likely only improve and expand.

3. It can point out places where courses need to improve. Coursera, a massive
open online course provider, is already putting this into practice. When a large
number of students are found to submit the wrong answer to a homework
assignment, the system alerts the teacher and gives future students a customized
message that offers hints to the correct answer.
4. Students could get additional support from AI tutors.

These programs can teach students fundamentals, but so far aren’t ideal for
helping students learn high-order thinking and creativity, something that real-
world teachers are still required to facilitate. Yet that shouldn’t rule out the
possibility of AI tutors being able to do these things in the future. With the rapid
pace of technological advancement that has marked the past few decades,
advanced tutoring systems may not be a pipe dream.

6. It is altering how we find and interact with information.

We rarely even notice the AI systems that affect the information we see and find
on a daily basis. Google adapts results to users based on location, Amazon makes
recommendations based on previous purchases, Siri adapts to your needs and
commands, and nearly all web ads are geared toward your interests and shopping

In education, adaptive learning has been a growing trend, with some 40

companies, such as Knewton and DreamBox Learning, already marketing
adaptive learning systems to schools in North America, Europe, and Asia.36




Companies like IBM, whose Watson tool is helping the travel company Thomson
trial a smart chatbot for its customers’ holiday searches

Visit Orlando was one of the first tourism boards to integrate AI into its web and
app platforms to answer more complex travel searches for things like the best
brunch spots that serve craft beer. The quality of responses to that query
between the pre- and post-implementation of AI in summer 2016 were night and
day. The web/app AI technology was developed by Austin-based Wayblazer, which
builds AI frameworks for travel companies around IBM Watson technology.

Likewise in 2016, Hilton Worldwide launched its Watson-powered “Connie” robot,

and Leading Hotels uses Watson’s brain to match specific guest searches with
individual hotels. Air Canada and SAS Airlines both use IBM’s machine-learning
platform for its flight attendants’ in-flight iPad app. And Phoenix-based Local
Motors’ electric, 3D-printed driverless minibus Olli is manned by Watson at the
wheel, which is scheduled to start driving city streets in Washington D.C., Miami,
and Las Vegas in 2017.

In other recent developments, unrelated to IBM Watson, Kayak co-founder Paul

English unveiled the Lola app in 2016, delivering a combination of AI-augmented
chat functionality and a live staff of travel agents.

AI-powered chatbots are also going mainstream in 2017. Domino’s, Pizza Hut, and
Taco Bell have already led the way with AI chat to improve customer service
efficiency, and provide roadmaps for ambitious travel brands. At the other end of
the hospitality scale, luxury brands like Dorchester Hotels and Edwardian Hotels
have invested in new AI-embedded customer relationship management systems.
Edwardian’s virtual concierge “Edward” is described as a “new interactive text
response mobile SMS service” to help guests request basic hotel amenities.

Meanwhile, Facebook is developing its in-house “DeepText” AI engine in an

attempt to compete with Google’s dominance in travel search. Also,
launched its new AI-powered Booking Experiences pilot platform in 2016 in select
cities, so travelers can now search more intelligently for bookable tours and
activities within the app.

2. Personalised Experience
The personalized content which is delivered using AI is proactive, relevant,
timely, location sensitive and addresses the immediate need of the customer. For
example-’s chatbots performs real-time translation and
supports 43 languages; hence, diminishing the language barrier. Apart from this, it
also provides a 24/7 customer service for travel related queries to its customers.
Hilton, a well-known brand in Hotels and Resorts worldwide has created
a Watson-enabled robot concierge which works along the staff of the hotel to
assist the visitors, greets them, suggests local tourist attractions, answers about
the services the hotel provides, consequently enhancing in-destination

3. Bleisure for Business Travellers

Mezi, using Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Processing provides a
personalized experience to Business travelers who usually are strapped for time.
It talks about bringing on a concept of bleisure(business+leisure) to address the
needs of the workforce. A research done by them states that 84% of business
travelers return feeling frustrated, burnt out and unmotivated. The kind of tedious
and monotonous planning that goes into the travel booking could be the reason
for it. With AI and NLP, Mezi collects preferences and generates suggestions so
that a customized and streamlined experience is given and the issues faced by
them are addressed properly.

4. Increases Productivity

Recently, Aeromexico started using Facebook Messenger chatbot to answer the

very generic questions by the customers. The main idea was to cater to 80% of
questions which are usually the repeated ones and about common topics. Thus,
to avoid a repetitive process, artificial intelligence is of great application. Airlines
hugely benefit from this. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines uses artificial intelligence to
respond to the queries of customers on twitter and facebook. It uses an algorithm
from a company called Digital Genius which is trained on 60,000 questions and
answers. Not only this, Deutsche Lufthansa's bot Mildred can help in searching
the cheapest fares.


AI could support recruiters maintain more reliable candidate communications.

From a screening perspective, AI has the capability to close the hoop with
potential candidates, resulting in more productive interactions and faster time to


If recruiters implement AI, instead of relying on their instinct and gut feelings,
they can reach out to potential hires at the exact time when they are willing to
make a move. For instance, monitoring social media behaviors that correlate with
someone being ready to make a transition.


The system could collate data from multiple sources and come up with a
calculation for whether candidates will be engaged in their roles over a long
period of time or not.



By implementing AI recruiters can actually run business simulations that predict

how candidates will respond to real world situations and changing scenarios.
These may refer to applications that run on computers or mobile devices and
adapt to interviewing processes in real time.


A recent MGI study estimated that by 2025 online talent platforms could enable
as many as 60 million people find work that more closely suits their skills or
preferences and reduce the cost of human resources management, including
recruitment, by as much as 7 percent.78 With an increasing emphasis on lifelong
learning, the opportunities for artificial intelligence in employment-to-education
settings have already started to attract new players. In 2015, the employment-
oriented social network LinkedIn acquired the educational website,
hoping to leverage AI to offer a personalized online class selection for members
considering a new job or career.

 Sales /marketing
How AI Is Changing The Day-To-Day Work Of Sales Teams

AI is able to filter your prospects and learn patterns in your sales flow to better
prioritize your actions. Your time will be spent more effectively, and your
conversations better.

Here’s how AI is changing the sales process for the better.

Big data takes the guesswork out of lead prioritization

Data is replacing intuition as a sales tool

Not only can AI highlight potential leads, but it can also suggest products and
solutions that would interest potential customers and meet their needs.All of
these tools are relatively new, and innovations in data collection, data
management, and data literacy will only strengthen their capabilities,
The role of sales managers is starting to evolve

If the role of the salesperson is changing, then the business as a whole will be
affected. That means sales team leaders must adapt to newly required skillsets,
as well.

“For sales teams to truly be effective, they must have leadership in place that
supports the work they do each day.” Steve Olenski writes at Forbes. “Data-driven
sales managers will be in high demand as businesses realize the importance of
analytics in the sales process. When sales managers arm teams with the tools
they need to source workable leads and close those leads efficiently, they see
higher levels of success.”
Along with a strong backbone in analytics and data science, development skills
will also be in demand within sales departments.

“AI is continuously developing and being refined. As it develops, having access to

digital media and coding skills will be a requirement,” Liz Alton writes at Sales
and Marketing Daily Advisor. “Even if you’re outside technology development, it’s
going to be important to have the technological literacy and skills to navigate the
evolving landscape.”
All of this change is actually good news for sales teams that worry about AI
making their jobs redundant. The roles aren’t going away; they’re just evolving.

“Forrester made waves with a report that said that 20 percent of B2B sales jobs
— 1 million in total — would disappear by 2020,” Chris Bucholtz writes at
CMSWire. “Salespeople will need to evolve into subject matter experts — on both
their own products and on the methods that those products can be delivered
going forward.”

AI reduces mundane tasks and frees time for relationship-building

Ironically, this is all good news for sales teams that aren’t tech-minded. AI can
eliminate many human-machine interactions altogether: While the machines
identify leads, salespeople will be responsible for applying the human touch.

“For the companies that embrace radical transparency and company-wide

adoption, tools like automated data capture and predictive analytics will become
the foundation of a new customer-centric culture,” Bullhorn’s Mike Restivo says.
“Responsibility for customer relationships will transcend sales and marketing
teams as staff at all levels capture vital information — whether related to new
business opportunities or existing relationships — that may otherwise have fallen
under the radar.

AI works to sort leads for you, reducing repetitive or mundane tasks.

“The everyday hassle of monitoring the required orders and sorting it out will
require regular interaction with the team, which will take away your valuable time
that you need to focus on other critical areas of your business,” Patricia
Vaz writes at Tweak Your Biz.
Think about how much time your team spends trying to find qualified leads. If your
team is like most, that’s a lot of time. But if leads were generated automatically,
your team could spend more time closing and working toward your sales goals.

“On average, sales reps spend 80 percent of their time qualifying leads and only
20 percent closing,” Alex Terry writes at CRM Magazine. “Qualifying leads
requires advance research and many phone and email hours trying to hone in on a
lead that can be turned into a sale. What if this vetting process could be done by
a machine that engaged all inbound leads in an amiable, human-like way?”

Marketers will send sales teams better qualified leads

Along with helping sales teams directly, AI also assists marketers in tracking
customer interest and moving them into the sales funnel.

“These indicators paint a more holistic picture of a lead’s level of interest, beyond
just a form submission typically associated with lead generation content like
ebooks.” writes Amy Wood and Helen Arceyut at Unbounce. “And automating lead
scoring takes the pressure off marketers having to qualify prospects via long
forms, freeing them up to work on other marketing initiatives.”
Think about it this way: Your marketing team collects the ingredients needed to
make the sales recipe. If the ingredients are poor, the chef has nothing to work
with.. Social media activity represents another opportunity to understand your
leads and personalize your messaging.”

By channeling customers deeper into the funnel, the leads handed to sales teams
improve even before the AI system starts filtering and identifying them.
Another benefit is the access to immediate data and feedback — brands will be
able to literally have ongoing dialogues with their customers and get instant
With the ability to adjust quickly to messaging and products, marketers can
better tailor their messages and let fewer leads slip away.

Replenishment and upselling options become clearer

A business needs to strike a balance between generating new sales and retaining
existing customers in order to continue growing.
AI can help answer questions like “When will this customer buy again?” and “How
do they use this product now?” We’re already seeing tech giants utilize big data to
make decisions and identify potential increases in demand.

“Uber uses data to provide rides, but it also uses heat maps to analyze patterns
and help drivers be in the right place at the right time,” explains Tx Zhuo,
managing partner at Karlin Ventures. “If you want to jump into the on-demand
game, discern what problems you can solve using data.”
Meanwhile, Amazon uses machine learning to expand beyond replenishment. It’s
able to discern buying patterns and anticipate the needs of customers

“Machine learning technology also helps Amazon predict and forecast demand,
thereby informing supply decisions to prepare for any given increases and
wanes,” Luke Turnbull of Principa explains.
“Keeping up to speed with fashion trends and styles is vital in such a competitive
and seasonal industry. Retailers can’t afford to ignore the advantages that
technology like machine learning brings to the table.”

From a B2B perspective, AI — and machine learning specifically — can monitor

industry trends to inform sales teams about potential barriers to buy or
opportunities to close a sale.

Beyond functioning as a perfect sales assistant, though, AI’s big promise is that it
reduces friction for salespeople as they navigate their stacks of sales tools. In
turn, this will allow sales reps to spend less time on predictable, repetitive work,
and more time building relationships with potential customers.
The future of automation isn’t replacing people, but rather letting them focus on
the human element of sales.

1. Cut Down Reporting Time

Internal reports are a pain.

On one hand, some brands have analytics tools configured, but fail to extract the
most valuable insights from their data.

Other brands, however, learn plenty from their analytics data, but spend hours of
effort and analysis to create reports.

Artificial intelligence can solve either problem (or both).

Solutions like PaveAI and Automated Insights exist to automatically generate

written reports from Google Analytics data with little or no human intervention.

2. Boost Ad Performance

We’ve also seen brands use AI to boost ad performance.

Using a solution like Albert, companies are able to optimize their advertising
across channels.

Albert automatically targets audiences and buys media, then tests and optimizes
those efforts at scale.

It’s just a more efficient way to manage digital advertising than using an all-
human team.

It seems to work, too: A Harley-Davidson dealership in New York used the tech
to increase sales leads by almost 3,000%.

3. Improve Content Marketing

AI can also make your content marketing better.

There are a number of content marketing areas that AI can tackle:

One is optimization, or making your existing content better.

A solution like Acrolinx is used by brands such as Facebook and Nestle to create
better content. The Acrolinx AI platform “reads” all of a brand’s content, then
recommends ways to improve it.

Another way to improve content marketing with AI is by predicting what will work
best next time you publish. is an AI solution that uses a 35 million page database to determine what

types of content resonate most with a brand’s audience.


Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality will enable new tools that help to perform testing in the virtual
world. It allows people, remotely located, to connect and jointly work on
situations that require trouble shooting. Simulation and product-creation can help
reduce the manufacturing time drastically.


Automation will help the manufacturing industry reach a high level of accuracy
and productivity, a level that is even beyond human ability. It can even work in
environments that are otherwise dangerous, tedious or complicated for humans.
Robotics, which are expected in the future, will have capabilities like voice and
image recognition that can be used to re-create complex human tasks.

Internet of Things (IoT)

We all have started to use smart sensors. It is a little known fact that the IoT
functionality will have a huge role in the manufacturing industry. It can track,
analyze production quotas, and aggregate control rooms, the technology can also
help to create models for predictive maintenance. When combined
with augmented and virtual reality and analysis of customer feedback, there can
be a number of meaningful insights to help towards innovation.

GE broke new ground in this space with its “power by the hour” service concept,
which calls for operators to pay for aeroengines only when planes are flying.

Program managers can use advanced analytics to improve the effectiveness of

review processes Program reviews sometimes fail to detect emerging problems
or prioritize critical decisions and tasks, resulting in delays that cost millions of
dollars. Faulty communications between the marketing and manufacturing
functions, which are still mostly manual, hinder the process. One aerospace
manufacturer sought to improve the effectiveness of its program reviews by using
advanced analytics to predict key performance indicators and identify “traffic
lights,” such as heavy email traffic, that could be a bellwether of problems that
would appear later on. Doing this, the manufacturer generated a pre-tax run-rate
cash flow impact of approximately €40 million.

AI can rethink manufacturing processes and assembly line practices to cut costs,
reduce waste, and speed time to market Manufacturing and assembly
inefficiencies cost manufacturers billions of dollars every year. Existing fault
detection and classification tools can be wildly inaccurate and cause expensive
and unnecessary interruptions on the assembly line. An aerospace manufacturer
applied AI technologies to these problems and reaped €350 million in savings.
Nearly 60 percent came from using advanced analytics to review data from every
step in the assembly process and then rewriting standard operating procedures
based on the results. The rest came from using machine learning algorithms,
collaborative robots, and self-driving vehicles to improve warehouse costs and
reduce inventory levels. A semiconductor maker reduced its material-delivery
time by 30 percent by using machine learning to propose the best time to leave
the office or warehouse. It also improved its production yield by 3 to 5 percent.

Machine learning can be used to track congestion and save drivers time and
One area of transportation that has benefitted from machine learning is video
surveillance. Katsaggelos shared a case study from his research where he
developed an intelligent video surveillance system capable of recognizing
traffic anomalies on its own. Using machine learning algorithms, the system
can detect and track moving cars during normal traffic flow and pinpoint
anomalies like congestion, accidents, or pedestrians on the road. He believes
intelligent surveillance systems can save humans valuable time.

“You can’t rely on a human to analyze hours and hours of video data,” said
Katsaggelos. “But an intelligent video system can look at video data of traffic
and be able to identify abnormal behavior.”

2. By 2030, self-driving cars will make our commutes stress free.

Alvin Chin, senior researcher for BMW Technology Corporation, highlighted the
car company’s use of machine learning to further develop connected cars. The
company’s machine learning app for smartphones—BMW Connected—pulls
data from BMW cars to improve the driving experience. In addition to
automatically analyzing frequent routes drivers take, the app also predicts
future trips and provides notifications of when to leave based off of traffic and
weather conditions.

From left: Alvin Chin, Aggelos Katsaggelos, Mo Patel, and Tony Belkin

Chin said incorporating machine learning in the automobile industry has only
just begun, but widespread adoption will happen quickly. He expects there to
be 381 million connected cars in use by 2021, with many featuring
autonomous driving.

“Today, we use one vehicle for every trip purpose. If you own a car, you take it
to work, to go shopping, and to go on vacation,” said Chin. “By 2030, there will
be a solution for each unique transportation purpose. Instead of commuting to
work and stressing about finding parking, you can take a ride-sharing service.
For more leisurely trips, self-driving cars will be able to handle transportation
while you relax and watch a movie.”

3. Insurance rates of the future will be based on real-time data.

Shifting the perspective to automobile insurance companies, Mo Patel,
practice director, artificial intelligence and machine learning at Teradata,
explained that machine learning is changing how insurers evaluate drivers.
Instead of determining a consumer’s policy based off of the number of miles
they have driven historically, Patel predicts machine learning technologies
will allow insurance companies to establish insurance rates by using real -time

“Your smartphone and connected car could collect a ton of data, from location

Consumer Service

company developing AI for customer relationship applications.

1 – AI Augmented Messaging

One company that provides AI-augmented messaging is LivePerson, which last

year had revenue of roughly $200 million and is currently working with IBM
Watson. The company is deploying a “bot assistant to the agent” model for some
clients. The goal is to avoid the frustration some people feel when dealing with a
pure bot while still using the technology to increase efficiency. At the moment the
company feels generalized bots don’t work, but specialized bots meant to handle
the most routine and simple tasks do.
A screen shot intended to demonstrate LivePerson’s conversational interface
passing messages to and from human agents – Image from LivePerson

Liveperson claims that around half of all customer service interactions are
currently highly suitable for bots. So they have created a system were the humans
and bots work in tango. Very simple questions can be handled directly by a bot,
but as soon as the conversation becomes too complicated the bot can hand the
conversation off to a human. The human can handle the more difficult task and
even hand the interaction back to the bot finished any simple details. This
maximize the time human agents spend doing what only human agents currently
can and minimize the time they spend on task that bots can handle.

This system allows one agent to handle multiple interactions. According to the
case studies LivePerson promotes, their system has allowed agents at UPC, one of
Ireland’s largest internet providers, to take up to three chats at once. While they
say the system even let agents at Sun handle up to 6 concurrent chats.
2 – AI Organized Email Inquiries

Having a person read every email a company gets to try to figure out what the
customer needs and how to deal with it can be a very time-consuming task. That
is why companies are using AI to speed up the process.

Once company offering this sort of tool is DigitalGenius with their core customer
service product. Some companies are using this AI-powered technology to scan
and tag emails to direct them to the right office. The system also provides agents
with macros and clips from the best past responses to quickly create a response.

This screen shot from DigitalGenius’ product page highlights the main benefits
that the company claims to deliver. While this image can’t be taken as our claim
to what DigitalGenius can or cannot do (we are not a customer of theirs), it should
be seen as a representative set of important business problems that AI
conversational interface companies (like DigitalGenius and it’s competitors) are
set out to solve
One example of their technology which DigitalGenius highlights is its use by
student prep company Magoosh. According to Magoosh, the system made their
customer service team significantly more efficient. The technology let them cut
the number of customer requests waiting for a reply by half and mad it easy for
Magoosh to meet their internal goal of responding to all customers with 24 hours.
DigitalGenius claims more than 83% of all incoming requests could be handled by
their system that would tag and sort them.

3 – AI Enhanced Customer Phone Calls

A screen shot from Software Advice’s “Demographics on Live Chat Customer

Service” survey, showing the frequency of live chat customer service engagement
among age groups

AI is harder to deploy for voice-based communications. On a purely technical level

it is more challenging for a computer system to deal with voice than chat.
Background noise, unusual speech patterns, accents, and poor pronunciation all
make it hard for an AI to translate voices into text.

In addition some people only call companies as a last resort when they have really
difficult issues to address. A customer survey by Software Advice found that when
it comes to simple questions customers were almost equally divided whether they
preferred to use chat or a phone call to get the answer, but to get an answer for a
complex financial questions customer prefer calling by a rate of three to one.
Yet even with these hurdles, there are companies who are managing to use AI to
enhance the work of customer service representatives who answer phone calls.

For example, the startup Cogito has developed a real-time conversation-analysis

tool based on behavioral science and deep learning. Their AI listens to
conversations for both content and tone. They claim it can detect mimicking,
change in volume, change in pitch, etc. to gain real-time insight into how
customers are feeling and how all company calls are going. It provides real-time
suggestions to customer service representatives to improve the call and evaluate

One of the first big tests of their system was at insurance giant Humana. During
a six month trial involving 200 agents, calls that used their system resulted in a 28
percent improvement in Net Promoter Scores, a 6 percent improvement in issue
resolution, and fewer callers asking to speak to a manager. Cogito claims their
system reduces call backs by 10 percent and increases customer satisfaction by
28 percent.

Similarly, Salesforce announced earlier this year that call monitoring is one of the
ways they are deploying their AI technology. Einstein Supervisor claims to be able
to predict customer satisfaction and make recommendations. It can track call
center patterns and also look for broad patterns within the data, such as
increased call volume from customers who bought a specific batch of a product.

AI Replacing Human Customer Service

Voice ordering demo – as seen on the short video on the Starbucks website

The potential cost savings and the ability to provide 24-hour customer service are
why some organizations are using AI to replace humans in certain customer
service applications all together. AI can’t yet fully replicate everything a person
can do when it comes to resolving complex issues, but there any many
applications where it doesn’t need to.
Pre-internet, many customer calls were to get very basic information or make very
basic orders. These are the type of interactions that are being fully automated
across several platforms. For example, something simple like ordering a pizza to
be delivered is a routine interaction, and the problems that would arise from AI
making a small mistake are minimal.

Food companies like Subway, Dominos, Starbucks and Wingstop have all recently
started using AI to let people place orders in different ways without human
involvement. Individuals can place pizza orders with chatbots in Facebook
Messenger or verbally tell Amazon’s Alexa to order them a frappuccino.

Several banks are making major pushes for AI, since people often interact with
their banks to get basic information such as checking balances or to perform
basic tasks like paying bills. Capital One recently unveiled their natural language
assistant, Eno.

Similarly, Bank of America plans to roll out Erica, their AI banking assistant, in the
coming months. Multiple major international companies now feel confident turning
over simple, routine consumer interactions to bots.

A Look into the Future of AI and Customer Support

Predictions of just how much AI will impact customer service performance and
employment varies considerably. This is partly due to the fact that many of the
most interesting uses of AI in customer service have only been deployed relatively
recently and the fact that customer service can be a bit nebulous.

While call center employment is an easily quantifiable measurement, some of the

biggest impacts of the technology will be freeing up cashiers, hostesses, and
salespeople at local stores. According to a 2016 report from McKinsey, 29 percent
of what customer-service representatives do has the potential for automation.

A Tata consultancy services survey of executives around the world found that 31.7
percent of major companies are currently using AI in customer service. It is the
second most common use of AI by companies after IT. It also found on average
executives expect cognitive technology to reduce customer service jobs on net by
4 percent.

1. AI powered gift selection: This is a tool that retailers like are
using to help consumers pick out just the right gift. For example, 1800- created “GWYN" (Gifts When You Need), a new AI-powered gift
concierge that behaves like your own “personal assistant” and learns your
preferences as you interact with the system. Through a series of questions, it can
get smarter and predict the type of gift that might be most appropriate for
somebody. For example, a customer might type, "I'm looking for a gift for my
mother," and GWYN will be able to interpret their question, and then ask a number
of qualifying questions about the occasion, sentiment and who the gift is for to
ensure she shares the appropriate, tailored gift suggestion for each customer.
Importantly, this is different than conjoint or even Bayesian methodologies,
because Watson understands, reasons and learns as it interacts with people in
natural language and then applies that insight to the gift recommendation. It pulls
data from the interaction but also many other sources such as consumer buying
trends and behaviors.
2. AI powered product selector: The North Face, an outdoor apparel, equipment
and footwear retailer, launched a new interactive online shopping experience
powered by IBM’s Watson. Consistent with The North Face brand’s mission of
applying technology to transform the retail experience, customers can now use
natural conversation as they shop online via an intuitive, dialog-based
recommendation engine powered by Fluid XPS and receive outerwear
recommendations that are tailored to their needs. Utilizing Watson’s natural
language processing ability, XPS helps consumers discover and refine product
selections based on their responses to a series of questions. For example, after a
shopper enters details on a desired jacket or outdoor activity, XPS will ask
questions about factors like location, temperature or gender to provide a
recommendation that meets the shopper’s specific usage and climate needs.
3. AI powered Out of Stock Management: A key challenge for retailers is
managing their inventory levels. Ideally, you have just the right amount of stock
on hand to meet consumer needs. If you are out-of-stock, you risk upsetting the
consumer and having them go to another store. If you have too much stock, you
have wasted money that you could have used elsewhere. So how can AI combat
being out-of-stock? Watson is working with retailers to monitor weather, purchase
rates and consumer behavior to do a better job of managing and monitoring
supply chains to right size inventory levels and avoid out-of-stocks. The tools we
use are called “IBM Commerce Insights” and “Watson Order Optimizer”.
4. AI powered Consumer Insight: AI is changing how marketers generate insight
about consumers to provide more contextual relevance. Understanding things like
social profiles, movement, weather, and behavior, AI can help marketers
understand at a more granular level what consumers want and need. Consumer
needs are dynamic—not static—and require an insight machine that can take this
dynamism into account and feed it into your marketing plans. AI goes through a
progression of understanding, reasoning, learning, and then adapting insight.
Further, AI can include a lot more information in its learning process so that the
marketing is more customized at the individual level. For example, Watson AI
includes a tone analyzer. The system understands (through augmented
intelligence) natural language and it learns over time so that you can reason and
adjust offerings. Consider cancer patients. By using the tone analyzer, Watson’s
AI can better assess consumer reactions to different treatment protocols and
tailor the plan to the individual patient to increase compliance. The potential here
is unlimited.

Supply chain

AI should also mean that traditional models for handling inventory can be used in
conjunction with sophisticated algorithms to increase the speed of computation,
and it will likely augment this process by generating new features to run such
models on. Danone, for example, is already using analytics with machine learning
capabilities to analyze their demand planning—gains, which resulted in a rapid
20% reduction in forecast error and a 30% reduction in lost sales.

The idea of a supply chain run without humans raises justifiable fears around
rising unemployment, and the dangers of losing control of AI evidenced by
Microsoft’s chatbot. However, when used effectively, when algorithms handle
order commitments or production planning, human judgement must still be
involved in the process. The Siemens’ factory is a good example of why this is
likely to be wrong, with more than 1,150 employees supporting their systems,
automation has clearly not given rise to mass unemployment. AI will still need
careful monitoring, and the knowledge of experienced logistics and operational
professionals to ensure that it is being used to its maximum potential.

Anticipating Orders Before they are Placed

Predictive algorithms may also enable “anticipatory logistics” — the ability to
shorten delivery times and improve efficiency by predicting demand before a
request or order is even placed, as global logistics provider DHL described
in Logistics Trends Radar. For example, global supply chain managers could use
AI systems to detect risks in trade shipping lanes and, using shock-detecting
sensors, potential damages to cargo; they could then take corrective action and
minimize operational delays.1
AI for Global Supply Chain Management Planning
For example, some supply chain management solutions use AI to gather and
correlate external data from many sources, including social media, newsfeeds,
weather forecasts and historical data. 8
One major food manufacturer used an AI-based demand forecasting solution to
tackle a common problem: meeting customer demand while minimizing inventory.
The challenge was complex, involving around 10,000 different products, each
subject to variation in demand. By applying predictive analytics, the company was
able to more accurately anticipate customer behavior by integrating the impact of
promotions and other special offers into its statistical models. 9
Artificial Intelligence in logistics & warehousing: Logistics function will undergo a

fundamental change as artificial intelligence gets deployed to handle domestic

and international movement of goods. DHL has stated that its use of autonomous

fork lifts is “reaching a level of maturity” in warehouse operations. The next step

would be driver less autonomous vehicles undertaking goods delivery operations.

Artificial Intelligence in procurement: AI is helping drive cost reduction and

compliance agenda through procurement by generating real time visibility of the

spend data. The spend data is automatically classified by AI software and is

checked for compliance and any exceptions in real time. Singapore government is

carrying out trials of using artificial intelligence to identify and prevent cases of

procurement fraud.

1. Streamlined Process:

If AI oversees the handling of the entire supply chain process, it can learn
to adapt to changing scenarios. By using historical data and trends, it will
be able to streamline every aspect from demand to inventory to supply in
order to best meet the needs of the market. This would be done with
minimal human input, saving time and reducing errors due to the
incomprehensibility of data. Also, due to vast memory options available,
the AI would literally be able to learn from past mistakes and ensure risk-
free paths are undertaken.

2. Near perfect Planning:

While usual supply chain planning involves sticking to certain parameters

of data because of data limitations, AI would not be hindered by this issue.
By using infinite sources of information at once, it would be able to alter
the demand schedule depending on a variety of continuously varying trends
such as weather, the stock market, traffic, etc., within a minimal time and
near zero error rate.

3. Market Shaping:

What can you do when you have near infinite knowledge of the past,
present and future? Make the perfect products of course. By using
continuous feedback from customers alongside all possible sources of
information, AI can not only assist in the supply chain process but also be
Product designers. The product designs would be linked to various
production elements such as Raw Materials quantity, lead times, and so on,
ensuring the most optimal design parameters.
[Read more: What is Blockchain Technology Worth to Your Supply Chain?]

4. Faster & Accurate Transportation:

While we’ve mainly discussed the data crunching aspect of AI, it can also
be used in mechanical processes. Apart from production machinery, AI can
be used to optimize transportation as well. Automotive and tech companies
such as Tesla and Google have been delving into the concept of driverless
cars for a few years now, with impressive results. If such a technology can
be come fully developed, it will be the driving force in Product
transportation and shipments. To improve accuracy, decrease lead times,
reduce transportation and human labor costs.


1. Help IoT achieve its maximum potential

While digital transformation is disrupting the agricultural world and more data
comes feed the systems, solutions like the Watson IoT platform enhance value by
applying machine learning abilities to sensor or drone data, transforming
management systems in real artificial intelligence systems. Cognitive IoT
technologies allow many types of correlations of large amount of structured and
unstructured data from multiple sources, such as historic weather data, social
media posts, research notes, soil information, market place information, images,
etc., to extract knowledge and provide organizations with richer insights and
recommendations to take action and improve yields.
2. Image recognition and insight
Agricultural drones help already farmers scan fields, monitor crops and seeding or
analyze plant health. Farm activities can become much more effective when
drone data, IoT and computer vision technologies join forces to optimize
strategies. Very recently, Aerialtronics, manufacturer of unmanned aircraft
systems, partnered with IBM to bring the IBM Watson IoT Platform and the Visual
Recognition APIs to commercial drones in order to capture images, analyze them
in near-real time, identify areas of concern and take actions. These artificial
intelligence systems will save time, increase safety and reduce potential human
error while improving
effectiveness. Agriculture could benefit greatly out of it.
3. Skills and workforce
In its most recent World Urbanization Prospects report, UN predicts that, by 2050,
66% of the world’s population will live in urban areas. This growing urbanization
will lead to a decrease of workforce in the rural areas. Innovative technologies
using cognitive systems will help address this challenge by easing farmers’ work,
removing the need for large numbers of people to work the land. Many operations
will be done remotely, processes will be automated, risks will by identified and
issues solved before occurring. Farmers will be able to take more informed and
rapid decisions. In the future, the right mix of skills will probably increasingly be
technology and agricultural skills rather than pure agricultural.
4. Determine the best options to maximize return on crops
The use of cognitive technologies in agriculture could help determine the best
crop choice or the best hybrid seed choices for a crop mix adapted to various
objectives, conditions and better suited for farm’s needs. Watson can use diverse
capabilities to understand how seeds react to different soil types, weather
forecasts and local conditions. By analyzing and correlating information about
weather, type of seeds, types of soil or infestations in a certain area, probability
of diseases, data about what worked best, year to year outcomes, marketplace
trends, prices or consumer needs, farmers can make decisions to maximize return
on crops.
5. Chatbots for farmers
Chatbots are conversational virtual assistants who automate interactions with
end users. Artificial intelligence powered chatbots, using machine learning
techniques, understand natural language and interact with users in a personalized
way. While it’s still early days and chatbots are used mostly by retail, travel,
media or insurance players, agriculture could also leverage this emerging
technology by assisting farmers with answers to their questions, giving advice
and recommendations on specific farm problems.
Although at the beginning, these ways of using cognitive technologies predict
exciting times ahead for agriculture on its road towards efficiency, sustainability
and meeting the world’s food needs. We’re looking forward to seeing how farmers,
agribusinesses and other decision makers on the value chain will harness the
power of IoT and artificial intelligence to shape the industry’s future.


Retailers can know more about what shoppers want— sometimes before shoppers
themselves In the future, artificial intelligence could help forecast and automate
retailers’ decision making in real time. By identifying and learning from patterns in
large volumes of data, spanning many disparate sources—previous transactions,
weather forecasts, social media trends, shopping patterns, online viewing history,
facial expression analysis, seasonal shopping patterns—AI can help companies
adjust to and master an increasingly dynamic market environment. By improving
forecasting accuracy, machine learning and computer vision can help better
anticipate consumer expectations while optimizing and automating supplier


An excellent example of this is the company Frank, an AI based advertising firm

for startups. Frank’s goal is to use AI in the same manner of targeting mentioned
above, only offering it to those businesses that could really use the savings. The
platform allows you to set the goals of your campaign, as well as hones in on
targeting and bidding efficiently. This saves time and money often devoted to
outsourcing digital advertising efforts, as well as gives an accurate depiction of
how ads are performing in real time. Expect players like Frank to make a
significant change in how small businesses and startups approach how to use AI
in their marketing.
Big Dollars For Small Budgets
One of the biggest news stories to hit about AI and advertising was Goldman
Sach’s $30 million investment into Persado. If you haven’t heard about it yet,
Persado essentially aggregates and compiles ‘cognitive content,’ which is copy
backed by data. It breaks down everything, from sentence structure, word choice,
emotion, time of day, and even can bring in a more accurate call-to-action. And for
those that hire digital marketers and advertisers, this sounds like a dream come
true in saving time and money. However, when it comes to writing, AI can only go
so far.
While some content creators and digital copywriters might be a little nervous that
AI will eventually take their jobs, that’s simply not the case. Writing involves a
certain sense of emotional intelligence and response that no computer can feel.
Moreover, the type of content that AI can create is limited to short-term
messages. I’m not sure about you, but I’ll safely bet that no major marketing
director is willing to put their Super Bowl ad in the hands of a computer. Overall,
while Wall Street recognizes Artificial Intelligence’s potential impact in the
creative world, it’s safe to say when it comes to telling a story, that human touch
will never go away.

The Unexpected Players

Perhaps one of the most underrated things about AI is its potential to eliminate
practices altogether. While we mentioned above that, yes, certain jobs in the
creative field will never go away, there’s a possibility that certain processes in
the marketing channel might change drastically.

For example, companies like Leadcrunch are using AI to build up B2B sales leads.
While before B2B sales could rely on either targeted ads or sales teams to bring
clients in, software like Leadcrunch’s is eliminating those processes altogether.
Granted, this isn’t exactly a bad thing as a lot of B2B communications relies
heavily on educating consumers, something a banner ad can’t do as accurately as
a person. Overall, companies like this are going to drastically change how our
pipelines work, potentially changing how the relationship between advertising
and AI work hand-in-hand for a long time.

Media /content /Entertainment

AI and content production

IBM’s Watson is arguablythe world’s best known AI brand. It is a huge play for
IBM, which delivered a presentation on AI delivering your next production at
IBC2016, including insight into how IBM uses Watson to help provide data for the
Wimbledon tennis championship.

A 2016 project also saw IBM Watson being used to produce a ‘cognitive’ movie
trailer for the Fox horror movie Morgan.
The AI platform was applied to the movie to conduct visual analysis which
tracked ”emotions, eeriness, frights and loving” alongside audio analysis of
“music and tone of voice”.

However even this project shows that creatives and editing professionals are not
about to be disintermediated to the scap heap by AI as human editors produced
the final cut of the trailer.

AI in content management

While certainly the biggest, Watson is not the only AI game in broadcasting.

Veritone Inc pitches itself as a leading provider of cloud based artificial

intelligence, media analytics and cognitive solutions. It has forged a partnership
with broadcast and digital media company Bonneville International Corporation.

Bonneville International President Darrell Brown said: “We were seeking a

solution that could index and analyse our broadcast programming in real-time, to
provide our advertising partners with increased visibility, transparency and

Veritone also signed a deal with Cumulus Media, a US broadcasting company and
the second largest owner and operator of AM and FM radio stations in the

AI in content consumption

Chinese consumer tech giant Xiaomi claimed its Mi TV 3S sets as the world’s first

However, details on how exactly the AI is powered are scant. The application
described is the TV’s ”Mi Brain which supports deep learning, speech recognition,
and computer vision. The ultramodern system will learn about your interests and
shall be able to suggest you TV programs and movies based on your taste”.

A type of AI gaining some traction in the marketing industry is ’cognitive

intelligence’ (CI) which promises to track individual customer consumption

Firms such as Piksel are using machine learning to manage the metadata
generated by OTT providers to offer insight to consumer experience.
IBM’s Watson on US quiz show Jeopardy
Conviva also targets OTT providers and claims its platform powers a set of
products and solutions to run SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand), AVOD (Ad-
supported Video on Demand) and pay-TV businesses, providing real-time visibility,
actionable intelligence and industry benchmarks for running a OTT (Over The Top)
businesses through the lens of consumer experience and engagement.

AI in content delivery

As long ago as 2014 Netflix was said to be using AI to enhance its movie

A clearer use of AI from Netflix is its development of Dynamic Optimizer.

This development was revealed at MWC by Todd Yellin, Vice President of

Innovation at Netflix. He explained that Dynamic Optimizer, which will be rolled
out this year, uses AI techniques to compress codecs and optimise network data

“No one wants to be interrupted in the middle of Bojack Horseman or Stranger

Things,” he said.

Netflix collaborated with the University of Southern California and the University
of Nantes in France to train the system, using hundreds of viewers and hundreds
of thousands of scenes.

By rating each scene individually on a variety of quality metrics, the AI system

learned to determine image quality.
Netflix described the technological advancement like this: “What we’ve done is
invest in the codex, the video encoders, so that at a half a megabit, you get
incredible picture quality on a 4-inch and 5-inch screen.

”Now, we’re down in some cases to 300 kilobits and we’re hoping someday to be
able to get to 200 kilobits for an amazing picture. So we’re getting more and more
efficient at using operators’ bandwidth.”

The use of Dynamic Optimizer is expected to roll out over the coming months in
markets such as Japan, Korea and India where Netflix expects huge uplift in
content delivery across mobile networks.

Artificial intelligence also looks set to be used to optimise over the top (OTT)
delivery by preventing congested links and connectivity losses – the booming
trend with the adoption of internet protocol (IP).

AI monitors the main content distribution infrastructure which can show the
status of the information flow and whether it needs improvement in the streaming
performance and the scalability of a broadcasting network.

AI in data management

AI could be seen as a response to the sheer volume of data being generated by

OTT platforms, and now traditional linear broadcasters as they adopt more IP
distribution and data driven personalised content and services; AI is seen as a
way to manage the output and drive personalisation.

The sheer volume of a company’s data pool can create confusion in the
distribution and management of which data which would be required for a specific
content or company action.

Charles Hartley, Accenture Global Media and Analyst Relations Manager for
Communications, Media and High-tech Businesses said: “There’s pretty intense
interest in AI this year, and a year ago there wasn’t anyone talking about it.”

Alberto Ibargüen, president of the Knight Foundation, a $2bn charity foundation

which includes the advancement of media in its charter, said: “Artificial
intelligence agents will impact our lives in every society on Earth. Technology
and commerce will see to that.

“Since even algorithms have parents and those parents have values that they
install in their algorithmic progeny, we want to influence the outcome by ensuring
ethical behaviour, and governance that includes the interests of the diverse
communities that will be affected.”
As adoption expands, 2017 looks set to be the year when AI applications in
broadcasting are deployed at scale in content management, delivery and
consumption and the benefits become tangible.

Oil And gas

The most popular AI applications from the top five industry leaders currently
appear to be:

 Intelligent robots – Robots designed with AI capabilities for hydrocarbon

exploration and production, to improve productivity and cost-effectiveness
while reducing worker risk ( ExxonMobil)

 Virtual assistants – Online chat platform that helps customers navigate

product databases and processes general inquiries using natural language
(see Royal Dutch Shell below)


Among its ongoing collaborative efforts with approximately 80 universities in the

U.S. and abroad, In December 2016, ExxonMobil announced that it is working with
MIT to design AI robots for ocean exploration. Brian Williams, an MIT professor
and a designer of the AI software that helped create NASA’s Mars Curiosity
Rover is a key member of the project team.

While the business advantage of using AI in deep sea exploration may not be
immediately apparent, the company aims to apply AI to boost its natural seep
detection capabilities.

Royal Dutch Shell

In August 2015, Shell announced that it would be the first company in the
lubricants sector to launch an AI assistant for customers (an anomaly in terms of
applications of artificial intelligence in oil and gas). Normally, customers searching
for lubricants and related products must navigate a large database in order to find
the ideal product(s) they are searching for. Shell aims to use its avatars Emma and
Ethan to help customers discover products using natural language.

The Shell Virtual Assistant functions through an online chat platform through the
company’s website.

Artificial Intelligence in Retail – 10 Present and Future Use Cases

Last updated on May 2, 2017 by Daniel Faggella

Artificial intelligence in retail is being applied in new ways across the entire
product and service cycle—from assembly to post-sale customer service
interactions, but retail players need answers to important questions:

Which AI applications are playing a role in automation or augmentation of the

retail process? How are retail companies using these technologies to stay ahead
of their competitors today, and what innovations are being pioneered as potential
retail game-changers over the next decade?

In this article, we cover a variety of examples in which AI is being integrated in

the retail industry, broken down into the following sub-categories:

 Sales and CRM Applications

 Customer Recommendations

 Manufacturing

 Logistics and Delivery

 Payments and Payment Services

Innovation is a double-edged sword, and as with any innovation results are a

mixed bag. While many AI applications have yielded increased ROI—this case
study of AI in retail marketing segmentation is one example—others have been
tried and failed to meet expectations, shining a light on barriers that still need to
be overcome before such innovations become industry drivers.

Below are 10 brief use cases across five retail domains or phases. Each provides a
fraction of a glimpse as to how AI technologies are being used today and which
are being created and piloted as potential retail industry standards in eCommerce
and brick-and-mortar operations.

Sales and CRM Applications

Pepper Robot

In 2010, Japan’s SoftBank telecom operations partnered with French robotic

manufacturer Aldebaran to develop Pepper, a humanoid robot that can interact
with customers and “perceive human emotions.” Pepper is already popular in
Japan, where it’s used as a customer service greeter and representative in 140
SoftBank mobile stores. According to Softbanks Robotics America, a pilot of the
Pepper in California’s b88ta stores in both Palo Alto and Santa Monica yielded a
70% increase in foot traffic in Palo Alto, and 50% of Neo-pen sales in Santa Monica
were attributed to Pepper.

Additionally, the AI creation spent time at hip apparel store the Ave, where the
retailer experienced a 98% increase in customer interactions, a 20% increase in
foot traffic and a 300% increase in revenue. Nestle announced in January 2016
that it planned to acquired Pepper robots to put in 1,000 of its Nescafes in Japan.

While not the only retail robot in use, in-store robots like Pepper appear to at least
initially boost store interest and sales. Whether this is a novel effect that will wear
off once retail robots become “the norm” remains to be determined.


Conversica “sales assistant” software is designed to automate and enhance sales

operations processes by identifying and conversing with internet leads. The sales
lead and management company claims the authentic-sounding messages result in
an average engagement rate of 35%.

In one case study, Star2Star Communications implemented its Conversica-

powered sales rep “Rachel” in 2016 and saw a 30% email response rate within
hours. The customizable sales assistant software is also used to cross-sell or re-
engage existing leads. New England-based Boch Automotive also employed
Conversica software, which it attributed to a an average 60-sale increase per
month at one Toyota dealership.

Customer Recommendations

IBM Watson Cognitive Computing

It’s no longer a secret that IBM’s Watson is providing a slew of order management
and customer engagement capabilities to eCommerce retailers. In 2016, 1-800- launched Gifts When You Need (GWYN), which the company calls an
AI gift concierge.

Through information provided by consumers about a gift recipient, the

software tailors gift recommendations by comparing specifics provided to gifts
purchased for similar recipients. The GWYN experience (which we included in our
more complete article on chat bot use cases) attempts to replicate the role of a
concierge at a store through a personal and detailed conversation with users. 1-
800-Flowers Chris McCann spoke to Digiday, noting that within two months, 70%
of online orders were completed through GWYN.



Consumer goods brands are contemplating automation of customer service

operations to maximize employee productivity. They are also exploring ways to
personalize consumer experience. 45 percent of the FMCG respondents mention
that customer experience improvement and identification of new customer needs
(42 percent) were top strategic priorities for the next three years. Brands,
including Nestlé, L’Oréal and Whole Foods Market, employ machine learning
algorithms to personalize marketing content to individual consumers based on
habits and preferences in a variety of channels ranging from email to mobile to
paid display. To solve the universal “what’s for dinner” problem, Kraft has
launched an AI-based app that offers recipes, lists out ingredients, and even loads
discount coupons on any of those ingredients on to the customer’s phone. The
app’s AI, which learns as it goes along, advises customers where to buy the
ingredients from and what to do with leftovers from previously used recipes. It
can even guess the size of a customer’s family based on the recipes downloaded.

AI FOR EFFICIENCY, ACROSS THE BOARD Walmart uses it to refine stocking

patterns. Seeing that consumers eat more steaks in warm, windy, cloudy weather
and hamburgers when it is hot and dry, the company times promotions, for beef
patty for example, based on weather conditions to gain substantial improvement
in sales. Another application of AI is to use machine learning to correlate price
and sales, and dynamically optimize prices based on that insight. AI can also
factor detailed inventory information to estimate price elasticity of different
products to help sellers increase margins.


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