You’ve probably used AI-driven apps without realizing it and may have even accessed them today. Businesses use apps built with artificial intelligence to learn about consumers’ purchasing behaviors. They leverage this data to suggest things consumers might want to buy, detect credit card fraud and even write news stories.
The prevalence of AI apps in society, including popular personal assistant apps like Siri and Cortana, have caused many people to wonder if this year will be the one that sees AI apps move into the mainstream. Let’s look at some AI apps currently used and being developed to explore the impacts they might have on our world and the ways we live.
Some Users Don’t Fully Harness the Power of a Personal Assistant App
Alexa is one example of a wildly popular personal assistant app that works on devices sold by Amazon. Analysts say it smoothly integrates into everyday life, gets smarter over time and is even used by kids in some households.
But, surveys indicate that although there are over 8,000 apps for Alexa, they aren’t very popular. Furthermore, only an average of three percent of people who download an app are still using it a week later.
Some tech experts think it would be wise to include a touchscreen in future generations of devices that work with Alexa, and Amazon is reportedly already considering that option. Then, the company could add push notifications to remind people of all the things Alexa can do, which might help users discover how to use Alexa and corresponding devices to their fullest.
AI Is Taking Over the Telecommunications Industry
If you’ve ever worked in or even seen video footage of a call center, you know the employees often have tough jobs to handle. They must stay calm when dealing with frustrated people and are often challenged to meet hourly quotas to ensure they are at least as productive as their fellow team members.
Many businesses already benefit from using some kind of answering system instead of directing customers to a service representative immediately. This alone can improve company productivity by as much as 50 percent. And companies have continued to build on this concept by experimenting with using AI in two ways:
- Sometimes, people interact with AI “chatbots” that determine what customers need and how to best assist them during first-line support queries.
- In other cases, human interactions are enhanced with artificial intelligence. KLM, the Netherlands-based airline, started using the latter model recently when it relied on an AI app to interpret conversations between agents and customers and suggest responses for agents to provide. This was intended to reduce customer wait times.
IBM and Salesforce Are Teaming Up to Maximize Business Insight
The call center examples above demonstrate how AI can be used in the moment to help workers make good decisions. However, IBM’s Watson artificial intelligence platform may soon be used in a similar but different way to gather business insight.
IBM representatives say Watson excels at making sense out of big data related to specialty fields such as health care and finance. It’s powerful, but it isn’t all encompassing. That’s why IBM is linking with Salesforce and its own AI platform, Einstein.
The Salesforce data and Einstein could deliver details about industry trends, customer predictions, and buying behaviors. Together, both companies hope the information gleaned from massive amounts of data could lead to smarter, better business decisions.
Given what you’ve just read, you’re in a good position to answer the question posed in the title. Clearly, AI is becoming more dominant in today’s society. But it seems in order for AI apps to really gain and maintain momentum, they’ll have to prove they have genuine usefulness, and people who have access to the apps must be aware of what they can do.
Image by Johnny Mckane