It’s time for your business to get serious about AI

Posted: 5 April 2017 | By Darcie Thompson-Fields

It’s been 60 years since the term artificial intelligence was first coined by computer scientist John McCarthy, but it’s only now the true benefits and potential are starting to truly be realised.

Billed by some as the fourth industrial revolution, AI is no longer a subject of science-fiction, or one that only applies for future generations.

“Every business should at a minimum make itself aware of AI progress in its industry.” Ovum Principle Analyst, Michael Azoff

Thanks to astronomical leaps in computing power, software and access to unthinkable amounts of data, intelligent machines are now a reality and set to have one of the biggest – if not the biggest – transformative impact on the business world ever seen. Some, like Intel, have even gone as far to describe AI as the most important breakthrough since the discovery of fire and the invention of the wheel.

“When we look back and as we look forward, I believe we are now at the doorstep of yet another major revolution,” said  Intel SVP platform engineering Amir Faintuch during last month’s Mobile World Congress. “This revolution will probably be the most important in our lifetime.”


Many industries are already benefiting; turning their stacks of data into something useful and gaining once unimaginable levels of insight into their business and (crucially) their customers.

Healthcare, e-commerce, retail, manufacturing, transport and logistics, legal, finance, insurance, advertising/marketing and customer services are just some industries being revolutionised through use of these technologies.

Unsurprisingly, investment in AI has risen astronomically in recent months and years from both vendors and end users alike – with the latter expected to increase AI spend by more than 300% in 2017, compared with 2016.

“This is just as profound a change as to the availability of the microprocessor to consumer level products or the internet” Gartner VP Distinguished Analyst, Whit Andrews.

Tech giants, including; IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Nvidia, Facebook and Google have already spent billions of dollars acquiring and building their AI capabilities to stay ahead – a figure which rises almost daily.

There are also now more than 1,600 AI start-up companies (900 in the US alone) who are actively building and/ or selling AI services – a figure that’s more than doubled in the past 12 months.

The stats

  • The US AI market is expected to be worth $16 billion by 2022
  • There was more than $300 million in venture capital invested in AI startups in 2014, a 300% increase over the year before
  • By 2020 85% of customer interactions will be managed without a human
  • 80% of executives believe AI improves worker performance and creates jobs
  • AI drives a $14 trillion to $33 trillion economic impact annually
  • There will be a 20% Lift in revenues for companies using AI by 2020
  • There will be a 300% rise in AI investment YoY
  • A survey from Forrester revealed that 55 % of enterprises had already invested in AI over in 2015, with 20 % evaluating/researching and 18 % piloting a proof of concept.

Stay competitive

“Our advice to people is you should at least be looking at this now, this year.” IDC Insight, Research Director, European Software Group, Philip Carnelley

Like the arrival of the personal computer, creation of the internet/email and the advent of cloud computing and storage – AI is expected to have a profound effect on every business, whether that’s a one-man- band or a multi-national. AI is not a passing fad, nor something that will simply disappear. It’s here to stay and it’s imperative that businesses start taking the subject seriously and, at the very least, gain an understanding of what’s available to stay ahead.

Some leading experts even suggest those that haven’t yet thought about utilising AI within their business, may already be two years behind their rivals.

The time to act is now

If you haven’t started your AI journey, don’t panic – but the clock is ticking. Start by arming yourself with an understanding of the industry and the opportunities it holds.

It’s important to learn what AI is, including all the fields that sit beneath it (Machine Learning, Big Data, Natural Language Processing etc.). But what’s most important is understand is how AI is being used in business today, what’s available, addressing some of the concerns around the subject, the benefits it provides and the steps to take to get started.

Starting your journey

To help get you get started, we’ve created An Introduction to AI. Using clear jargon-free language you can fully understand this free report will provide you with an introduction to the industry and the opportunities it holds.

There is no assumption. To ensure the highest levels of quality and accuracy, we’ve conducted extensive research and interviews with some of the world’s leading and most esteemed tech analysts, professors, researchers, vendors and end-users in which AI has already had a transformative affect.

No matter where you are in your AI journey, whether you’re at the start, already dipped your toes, or using it and simply want to increase your knowledge, we’re confident there will be something here to satisfy your interest.

Get your free copy of An Introduction to AI here.

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