Tech Quarterly

Essential AI insights from Q4 20

In this Tech Quarterly

Artificial intelligence is helping to improve efficiency across many types of organisations, as well as reducing workplace stress and improving mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

5 minute read

Shirley Siluk

Shirley Siluk

Senior Editor

November 18, 2020 7:00 pm

1. Banks might use AI to ‘game the system’, regulator warns

About one third of 60 global banks are using machine learning for credit scoring and regulatory capital calculations, raising concerns that financial institutions might use such technologies to “game the system”, warns Benoît Cœuré, head of the innovation hub of the Bank for International Settlements.

2. AI is helping to reduce pandemic-related workplace stress

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused new levels of stress at work, and 75 per cent of people say AI has helped their mental health. According to an Oracle/Workplace Intelligence survey of more than 12,000 employees, managers and executives across 11 countries, AI has reduced stress levels by giving them the information they need for their jobs (31 per cent), automating tasks (27 per cent) and reducing stress (27 per cent).

3. Software revenues for financial services AI to triple by 2025

Revenues for AI software used in financial services is projected to grow from $2 billion in 2020 to $9.1 billion in 2025, according to an August 2020 forecast from Omdia.

4. Companies investing in AI likely to outnumber those cutting spending

While many Global 2000 companies slashed spending on emerging technologies such as AI after the  pandemic started, others expect to increase investments over the coming year. A survey by KPMG International and HFS Research found that 39 per cent expect to spend more on AI, compared to 31 per cent that expect to spend less.

5. IDC: AI market revenues to reach $300bn by 2024

While the pandemic has led to slower growth this year in AI revenues, the market is expected to grow by 17.1 per cent from $156.6 billion in 2020 to more than $300 billion by 2024, IDC predicts in its Worldwide Semiannual Artificial Intelligence Tracker.

6. Smart city response to pandemic will drive increase in AI, big data spending

Smart city technologies like AI and big data will be in high demand to deal with COVID-19, driving an increase in spending that grows from $96 billion in 2019 to $327 billion in 2025, Frost & Sullivan predicts.

7. Continued progress in deep learning requires more efficient computing

Advances in deep learning have depended upon steady increases in computing power, but that progress is “rapidly becoming economically, technically, and environmentally unsustainable”, which means dramatically more efficient computing methods are needed, a research paper by MIT scientist Neil Thompson and colleagues finds.

8. For large companies, AI’s biggest benefit is improved efficiency

Large companies identify improved efficiency (49 per cent) as the top benefit of AI deployments, while smaller companies say they find AI most beneficial for new product development (35 per cent) and IT efficiency (31 per cent), according to Informa Tech’s 2020 State of Artificial Intelligence.

9. Audio/video impersonation leads list of top AI-enabled future crimes

The six most serious future crimes that could be enabled by AI include audio/video impersonation, driverless vehicles as weapons, tailored phishing, disruption of AI-controlled systems, large-scale blackmail and AI-authored fake news, according to researchers from University College London.

10. Public, private sectors differ significantly in views on AI ethics

Among private-sector companies surveyed by EY, 69 per cent agree that regulators understand the complexities of AI technologies and business challenges; by contrast, 66 per cent of public-sector policymakers disagreed with that statement.

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