There was plenty of noise about Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Data Analytics in 2018. And we don’t expect it to be any quieter in 2019. To help you make sense of the hype, we’ve compiled some key takeaways from and predictions for these technologies, so you can position your business for success in the new year—and beyond.

Finance Will Embrace Machine Learning as a Service (MLaaS)

Cloud computing providers Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google’s Cloud Platform are currently leading the pack concerning AI research, which has allowed them to become premier MLaaS providers. MLaaS revenue is anticipated to grow to a whopping $19.86 billion by 2025, according to Transparency Market Research.

Already highly competitive, the cloud computing market is entering its next phase, with easy-to-implement, easy-to-use Machine Learning expected to be a key differentiator. Banks will continue to take advantage of this technology to push the “self-driving finance” envelope. Forbes predicts more customers will rely on AI to help drive their finances and reach their financial goals.

Automated Machine Learning Will Take Center Stage

One trend that’s fundamentally going to change the face of ML-based solutions is AutoML. Forbes predicts it will empower business analysts and developers to evolve machine learning models to address more complex scenarios. What’s more, AutoML is flexible, portable, and customizable, allowing business analysts to focus on business problems instead of the technical process and workflow.

AI Will Become Smarter and Create Jobs

Multiple sources expect AI to continue to deliver astonishing breakthroughs for much of the next year.

We can expect AI applications to begin solving problems based on real-world, human expertise, according to Analytics Insight. Data analysis done with Machine Learning creates models that recognize patterns, automate decisions, and make predictions. With a renewed focus on knowledge engineering, AI will begin to leverage human wisdom like never before.

Also, by the end of 2019, AI will be creating more jobs than it is taking, with new positions in education, healthcare, and the public sector, according to Gartner. While the fear of jobs lost to AI is not something we shouldn’t be cognitive of because approximately 1.8 million jobs will lose to automation, however, we should note AI will create 2.3 million jobs.

As you might expect with emerging technology, finding the best AI talent has already been hard and is expected to continue to be tough for businesses, according to Analytics Insight. In addition to technical and data science experts, the talent shortage will apply to social, operational expertise, legal, industry, and customer experience experts.

More Devices Will Include AI Recognition & Smart Recommendations

Alexa was just the beginning. Expect to see more speech recognition tools as 66.6 million Americans are projected to be using speech or voice recognition technology by 2019, according to Analytics Insights. Companies such as Sony, Hisense, and TiVo have already unveiled voice-controlled TVs, while Delta, Whirlpool, and LG have added Alexa’s voice recognition features to help consumers control just about everything in their homes.

Computers can now see, acquire, process, and analyze data from visual sources, and this technology is expected to become more prevalent in 2019. Image recognition technology will be able to detect license plates, diagnose diseases, and analyze photos to complete payments or other verifications.

Netflix may have started recommendations, but online retailers will take it to the next level, thanks to AI. In addition to recommending products based on your browsing history and previous purchases, recommendations are based on sentiment analysis for a more personalized and guided shopping experience.

Businesses Will Continue to Invest in Data Quality and IA

With AI infiltrating every aspect of technology, the number one challenge—as you might suspect—will be maintaining quality data and hosting an AI-worthy environment, according to Analytics Insights. Forrester predicts AI adopters will continue to invest in information architecture (IA) to make their business visions a reality.

What’s more, building a strong foundation for handling data and empowering business users will continue to be important in 2019, according to the BI Survey. Three significant trends from 2018 are expected to remain in the new year: mastering data and data quality management, data discovery, and self-service BI.

Marketers Will Refine Targets With Predictive Analytics

Marketers have been using data to drive decisions for several years now, but thanks to predictive analytics, which integrates data mining, modeling, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence, they will begin to anticipate the actions of consumers with more accuracy. Marketers will be able to determine what types of content have the most impact, pinpoint prospects earlier in the buyer’s journey, and predict and optimize customer lifetime value.

Email, in particular, will benefit from predictive analytics. Fifty-eight percent of marketers were either using or considering using predictive techniques to improve the content of their emails, according to Econsultancy’s 2018 Email Census. Expect to see more behavior-based personalization. Ultimately, predictive analytics will become a part of the general trend toward AI and automation in business.

Prescriptive Analytics Will Augment Human Decision Making

While predictive analytics forecasts potential future outcomes, prescriptive analytics shows one or more courses of action and the likely result of each decision. With prescriptive analytics help businesses can determine specific recommendations through heuristics (rules), Machine Learning, and other AI constructs.

With more companies embracing prescriptive analytics, we can expect to see smarter supply chains, more efficient production and fulfillment processes, and ultimately, happier customers, according to Forbes. This technology will help businesses stay one step ahead of customer’s rising expectations.

“In 2018, AI began going deeper, not just forecasting but actually taking business actions,” explains Fayez Mohamood, CEO, Bluecore. “2019 will see more adoption of deep vertical-specific AI that will autonomously take high-value business actions across the supply chain—from purchasing and warehousing to messaging and customer service management.”

Planning your 2019 data strategy and want to talk to someone, schedule a consultation with one of our analysts!


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