Artificial Intelligence is making mobile apps even smarter

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) enables computers to do much of what humans have traditionally done, and even to correct our mistakes. AI encompasses everything from machines learning languages to managing knowledge. In the context of mobile app development, it is used for chatbots, context-aware sensors, and all kinds of interfaces. AI is fast carving out a niche for an emerging class of highly interactive applications.

According to a study by Forrester Research, yearly investment in AI worldwide is expected to rise by 300 percent in 2017. Gartner Inc. predicts that AI apps will make the top 10 list of strategic trends in the 2017 tech market, and that by 2018, the mobile app market will see a flood of AI apps, given that more than 200 of the world’s largest business enterprises are engaged in developing the gadgets.

Influence of AI on app development

AI has hovered in the background since the infancy of app development. Today, it’s coming to the fore. Many people became aware of its influence when Apple launched Siri. Although Siri was programmed with static, directive-based algorithms, it opened the gates to apps with human-like features.

A traditional thermostat versus Nest illustrates how AI is developing. A traditional thermostat will adjust the heater or air conditioner to a pre-set temperature according to a timer, whereas Nest is a smart device with dynamic features that enable it to register its user’s preferences over time and adjust its system accordingly.

Everybody’s getting in the game

Smart mobile app giants such as Google, IBM, Sony, and Apple Samsung are now heavily investing in AI and voice assistant ventures.

Cloud computing and big data computing have played a major role in bringing AI to the forefront. IBM Watson was a pioneer in making use of AI, and is now on its way to creating a variety of enterprise mobile apps. Although the algorithms are mostly unchanged, AI figures more prominently than before.

My Starbucks Barista facilitates clients orders
Image via Strabucks website)

Meanwhile, Google has acquired DeepMind for $600 million to focus on AI and machine learning. Startup Faraday Future’s self-driving supercars, unveiled at the CES 2017, are changing the face of technology, with electric vehicles that can accelerate from zero to 60 mph (97 km/h) in just 2.3 seconds. Nowadays, many companies use AI in iPhone app development and android app development with the aim of enriching user experience.

AI-backed smart apps are also contributing to making day-to-day tasks easier.  Starbucks, the global coffeehouse brand, has recently announced an AI-backed mobile app, ‘My Starbucks Barista’, which allows customers to easily place their orders.

Similarly, another AI-backed app was recently unveiled by the California-based fast food chain Taco Bell. TacoBot doesn’t just take your order, but makes recommendations and answers your questions.   

In a nutshell

Apps that are using AI to some extent include:

•    Facebook: Uses AI for face recognition to tag people in photographs, performing the process with a precision equivalent to that of any human being.

•    Flipkart: This ecommerce shopping app uses AI in searching for items using relevant photos.

•    Google image search: Uses AI for finding relevant images.

•    Siri: Apple’s Siri is a voice assistant that uses AI in fixed algorithms.

•    Google Allo: A smart app that helps in sharing messages, file notes, and images, and also identifies the most messaged numbers.

•    Amazon Alexa: A smart personal assistant that is capable of voice interaction, compiling to-do lists, and providing news and weather forecasts.

With AI becoming more prevalent, the world is entering a new realm of automation.

Feature image via Stockvault.

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