Artificial intelligence can make Digital Life Services fun

Written by on May 25, 2016 in Guest Blog with 0 Comments

race‘The difference between men and boys will be the brains of their toys’. Developer conference season is well underway and the central theme that is emerging is a focus on making Digital Life services smarter and more intuitive. This has implications for both services to consumers created by the ecosystem itself but also the possibility to make it much easier for businesses to communicate and service their clients.

  • The customer service industry has been aware for some time with regards to the effectiveness of chat, but the possibility to automate a large part of it offers another leg up in terms of efficiency.
  • I think that this combined with the ability to make personal digital assistants and other Digital Life services more engaging, fun and useful will be a big driver of the ecosystems over the next few years.
  • The problem is that to make these services intuitive is very difficult requiring a first class artificial intelligence and machine learning infrastructure driving the service.
  • This singular system has the potential to power everything within an ecosystem including search algorithms, personal assistants, chat bots, autonomous cars, game opponents and so on.
  • This is why all of the ecosystems are engaged on developing their AI offerings and I see them at very different levels of development.
  • Top of the heap is Google which has been working on this for years and I think has a large head start on everyone else.
  • The substantially superior performance of Google Now compared to the other digital assistants, Siri, Cortana, Alexa, Facebook M and so on is a testament to that fact.
  • This is Google’s bread and butter and if its dominance is to continue it will have to maintain this lead.
  • Next comes Apple, Microsoft, Sony and Baidu all of whom have been working on this for a while but have a long way to go to catch up with Google.
  • Sony is the dark horse here as although it has made a mess of much of its consumer electronics businesses, it has been working on AI for many years and may be able to pull a rabbit out of the hat.
  • Behind this group is Amazon.
  • RFM’s assessment of Alexa leads me to believe that Amazon is in the race but has some catching up to do to match Apple, Microsoft and Baidu.
  • Right at the back is Facebook, whose beta launches have revealed bots that are far too stupid to offer a half decent user experience.
  • Even though I see Facebook as the biggest potential emerging ecosystem with the most long-term upside, this is its Achilles heel.
  • Facebook has the resources to invest or acquire in this area but it needs to get a move on as the others are not standing still.
  • Furthermore, I suspect that its ability to really develop into a fully-fledged ecosystem with 80% Digital Life coverage (compared to 35% today) will be dependent on fixing this short coming.
  • I still see a lot of long-term upside in Facebook but remain concerned that short-term expectations may not live up to reality in H2 2016 (see here).
  • Hence I prefer Microsoft or Samsung for the short-term and also Apple for those income investors with long time horizons.

This article was first published on Radio Free Mobile.

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About the Author

About the Author: Dr Richard Windsor is the founder of Radio Free Mobile which is an independent research provider. The research helps clients to understand and evaluate the players in the digital ecosystem and presents a unique perspective on how all the pieces fit together in an easy to read and digest way. The product is available on a subscription basis and counts members of the handset, telecom carrier, Internet, semiconductor and financial industries as its subscribers. RFM is the land of the one man band meaning that Dr. W. also makes the tea. .


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