The future of AI and the enterprise

Whether or not a company is actively involved in developing AI, it’s clear that it’s a powerful force affecting all industries. IDC claims AI was an $8 billion industry in 2016 and will grow to $47 billion in 2020.

However, five years ago there were no cognitive engines as we define them today. Today there are over 5,000 cognitive engines and in the next five years, it is expected there will be well over a million engines.This is a true testament to the fact that the industry is constantly growing and poised to expand even more beyond 2018. Institutions and organizations recognize the necessity of analyzing unstructured data at scale in near real-time.

Unfortunately, the current landscape of artificial intelligence solutions can be expensive, skill-intensive and difficult to implement. Such solutions also tend to be siloed, extremely narrow in their application, and challenged in their ability to deliver real value. In PwC’s Digital IQ survey, only 20% of executives said their organizations had the skills necessary to succeed with AI. As a result, the power of AI has been largely inaccessible to most organizations.

This is all going to be changing as forward-thinking businesses will begin to set aside budget for AI in the coming years. If AI has been on a company’s radar, the good news is that there is still time to learn and strategize, but unfortunately, there will be a huge chasm in business application of early adopters and those who fell behind. But what can the AI industry do to assist enterprises that are seeking to utilize their services? AI can, and should, utilize the data wherever it is.

We predict that AI will prove itself through business application and will meet industries in the cloud, on multiple clouds, or on-premise.

Take AWS for example. Currently, it’s enabling scalable, flexible and cost-effective solutions for startups to global enterprises. To support the seamless integration and deployment of these solutions, AWS established the AWS Partner Competency Program to help customers identify Consulting and Technology APN Partners with deep industry experience and expertise. As AWS claims, “Out of all of the innovations that are being driven by cloud, the areas of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are perhaps the most exciting.” In order for AI companies to tap into some of that excitement, they need to prove themselves with something notable like the designation that AWS provides.

Many major companies today are in various stages of cloud migration: Some are still transferring data to the cloud, others are mobilizing to different clouds at once; and some, are going back to on-premise solutions. The challenge for the AI industry is that it will need to be versatile enough to be able to analyze the data wherever it’s located. As a result, customers who have made significant investments in on-premise storage, and/or have cost or security concerns about storing their content in the cloud, will be able to take advantage of the business applications that artificial intelligence offers.

Regardless of where, progressive companies are unlocking the power of AI

AI deployments can help augment the daily and tedious roles of the modern workforce, democratize services that were originally costly or unavailable and tap into the wealth of unstructured data for actionable use because now, every frame of video or second of audio can be searched for objects, faces, voices, brands, sentiment, text and more. The speed at which AI can tackle the previous tactics of manual discovery open a world of opportunity via human-machine thinking partnerships.

Guest post by Tyler Schulze, vice president & general manager, Veritone