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Google raises the the bar with AI (Artificial Intelligence)

By Joe Tawfik

Artificial Intelligence presents a new paradigm shift from the previous "mobile first" approach in Google's design thinking. Every product that Google is developing or is releasing has A.I. embedded into it. This grassroots integration is a significant point in its own right. Whether it's Maps, Photos, or merely online searching you can guarantee there is a level of A.I. or machine learning behind all these products.

At its I/O developer's conference in San Francisco on the 8th of May conference, Google showcased new versions of their applications and stimulated developers with examples of commercial applications.

Here is the summary of the highlights:

  • Google Photos
    Will have a new feature called Suggested Actions which will suggest enhancements to the user enabled through machine learning
  • Google Lens
    Is getting a makeover and will become integrated with the Android camera allowing users to turn on their camera and receive information such as a short description of shops and landmarks as they move their camera around.
  • WaveNet
    Has enabled Google to provide more natural sounding voices for Google Assistant. These new voices will be released this summer
  • Google Assistant
    Will become more integrated with more smart devices enabling users to do more things hands-free
  • Android P
    Is the new operating system which will have higher adaptive features powered by machine learning such as Adaptive Battery, Adaptive Brightness and App Actions. These features are designed to personalise the phone for the user based on their actual habits and usage.
  • Google News
    Is getting a facelift with the use of Artificial Intelligence. to curate news for users and a new feature called Full Coverage that uses temporal co-location to visually display how a news story is unfolding in various locations.
  • Google Maps
    Will have Google Lens integrated to enable a user to navigate and know precisely where they are and details of any specific location. Again this is all powered by A.I.
  • TPU 3.0
    Was released. Ok, this is technical, but this is the Tensor Processing Unit hardware that runs machine learning and A.I. The significant aspect is that Google is backing up their A.I in the cloud concept with real techie grunt. It is important to have comfort in the underlying infrastructure provided by TPU 3.0 as this enables A.I. to be scaled for business and for Google to realise its vision of democratising A.I.
  • Google Duplex
    Is the new technology that stole the show. Google has been acquiring A.I. companies such as Deep Mind and investing in A.I. for over ten years to be able to showcase the most talked about demonstration of A.I. The demo (provided in the video below) is Google Assistant making a booking for a hair salon (and later a restaurant) using near-perfect human speech. The A.I. conversation is virtually indistinguishable from a real person. This demo will no doubt be talked about for some time as it raises a multitude of questions about the possibilities and dangers of A.I.
  • Googles' I/O 2018 conference raised the bar for the commercial possibilities in Artificial Intelligence. From industries such as medicine, retail, finance, and hospitality through to helping the disabled and less developed communities A.I. can play an essential role in assisting people to live better lives.

    Joe is the founder and CEO for Kinetic BPO. Joe Tawfik has over 25 years senior management experience. He has been a Board Director since 1996 and held numerous CEO roles. He has been actively involved in the outsourcing industry in Australia, Asia and the Middle East since 1996, in both a hands-on and a strategic consulting capacity. Joe has provided services to companies such as Optus, Saudi Telecommunications, Mitsubishi Motors, Air France, ING and the Bahrain Government.

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