Artificial intelligence (AI) technologies promise to revolutionize the workplace, but for now, their impact is primarily being felt in the consumer-facing applications and services space.
New research released today by Tractica reveals that consumers are driving the market for AI hardware, software and services in terms of revenue. Last year, the segment generated nearly $1.9 billion in sales, a figure that is expected to reach $2.7 billion when 2017 comes to a close.
By 2025, consumer AI is predicted to generate $42.1 billion in revenue as leading online and cloud companies use the technology, deep learning in particular, to drive deeper user engagement.
"The consumer AI market is being led by the internet giants of our time, and consumer AI use cases are among the most advanced proof points for commercially available AI to date," said Tractica principal analyst Jessica Groopman in prepared remarks. "Companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Baidu, Apple, and others are pioneering the use of AI in consumer interactions, both to mimic and to empower human capabilities."
Beyond those internet heavyweights, ally types of brands and suppliers are beefing up their AI capabilities, noted Groopman. AI is being worked into their business processes and products and is increasingly being enlisted to spearhead customer interactions.
Businesses have at least one good reason to use AI as a means of providing customer service: big savings.
Banks and healthcare organizations can expect to save $20 million in total this year, thanks to AI chatbots and their ability to answer customer questions, solve basic problems or route more complex issues to the appropriate customer care specialist, according to Juniper Research. By 2022, those businesses can expect the savings to reach $8 billion per year.
"Financial services are in an industry increasingly faced with lower customer loyalty as users are more likely to seek out better deals. Therefore providing fast hassle free services through chatbots is a means of customer retention," observed Juniper senior research analyst Lauren Foye.
AI is also poised to have a major impact on the software industry. By 2020, practically all new software releases will contain some form of AI, Gartner recently predicted.
In an earlier Tractica forecast, the worldwide AI software market is predicted to reach $59.8 billion by 2025, up from $1.4 billion in 2016, the research group said this spring. "Artificial intelligence has applications and use cases in almost every industry vertical and is considered the next big technological shift, similar to past shifts like the industrial revolution, the computer age, and the smartphone revolution," said Tractica research director Aditya Kaul in a statement.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.