Artificial intelligence integrated into mobile apps holds tremendous promise

Lars Hard

      Lars Hard

Thanks to advancing technology and new machine intelligence, each day the world creates and stores more data at a rate that we never thought possible. In fact, about 90 percent of the data that exists today was created in the past two years.

With access to more information than ever before, we are in need of tools that help us process and analyze this data to provide key solutions to living and managing our daily lives. The mobile platform, cloud computing, big data analysis and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are converging to help us take the next significant step in machine intelligence which will do just that.

Already our mobile devices, particularly smartphones and tablets, have provided a new, unequivocal platform for complex communication. The emergence of mobile apps has provided us with a new, more personal level of virtual assistance--you can pay your bills and set reminders via your mobile banking app and shop via a branded retail app. Therefore, apps are already moving us toward expecting our machines to perform more simplistic--yet also more specific--tasks on command. 

AI is taking this much further. Simply put, AI, when integrated into today's devices, can perform human-like tasks that allow devices to learn, analyze, optimize, diagnose, configure and deliver your personal data in the form of customized solutions.

Today, when you use a recommendation or advice-based technology on your mobile device, it's often based on aggregated behavior. But, referencing a different individual's behavior for your actions isn't necessarily very accurate or helpful. In our modern life, we will increasingly expect and require granular insights into our daily lives to help us be more productive and efficient.  

This technology already exists today--the idea of the "virtual assistant" is a reality--however the application is crude and basic. Siri is a very good example of first generation AI entering the broader consumer market. Google's Project Glass is also an exciting example of tomorrow's new mobile devices. However, both of these examples can be considered beta versions of AI's potential.

While Siri is a virtual assistant able to share information with you through voice activation, it doesn't provide you with solutions to problems you don't ask. For example, it does not proactively let you know that the weather report is calling for rain in the afternoon and that the corner store you are passing sells umbrellas; it does not remind you that you are surpassing your monthly budget when you purchase a new pair of shoes via your favorite shopping app; and it does not let you know that your blood sugar is too high while you are eating a particularly rich meal.

While Google's new glasses display exciting new possibilities with the use of Augmented Reality (AR), there wasn't too much displayed that you cannot already do with your existing apps--reminders, mapping functions using GPS and social interactions are all things we can do today. The innovation in this example is really the interactive model of the hardware device. What's missing is the incorporation of AI that shows the full potential of these types of devices; how we can utilize and enhance our data to optimize and analyze for us. Therefore, our mobile apps will take new forms within new devices, and AI software integration will provide a "smart layer" to everything apps already do for us.

With advances in AI technology, developers will find a lot of opportunities to move the existing set of apps to the next level of smart interaction, deep personalization and intelligent answers, recommendations, diagnosis and more. There are also a lot of new opportunities for entirely new types of apps built from the ground up, based on functions, so far, only humans have been able to do.

Just as today's typical consumers are beginning to access AI-powered solutions to help manage and enhance their lives, the impact these smart mobile apps will have for experts in every industry will be immense. With a new generation of tools or devices that will be able to capture active knowledge in ways like never before, a scientist who specializes in energy conservation or a doctor who specializes in bone diseases--instead of documenting his or her knowledge in photographs and books--will be able to activate some of this knowledge in an app that can deliver an instant diagnostic analysis and opinion. This transition from passive knowledge to active knowledge is an exciting new frontier we are only just beginning to approach.

Lars Hard is CTO and founder of Expertmaker, a premier Artificial Intelligence (AI) software platform. On June 8-10 Expertmaker is teaming up with partner Vodafone, one of the largest global mobile operators to host an AI Hackathon at the Vodafone xone in Silicon Valley to host an AI Hackathon, which aims to create new mobile apps that help solve today's news overload. The winner will be awarded $10,000. To register and for more information visit our website.