The newest generation of machine learning-enabled applications is transforming how companies are using technology to get closer to customers, giving people more time for innovation so they can create even more valuable products and services.
Consider Internet cafes that fill seats with streamlined ease using chat bots as digital concierges. Or supermarket shelves that let sales reps at consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies see exactly what’s selling (or not) in real time — no physical sensors needed. These are just a couple of the exciting machine learning demo spotlights in my video interview interview at SAP TechEd Las Vegas with Karsten Schmidt and James Rapp, both of the SAP Innovation Center in Silicon Valley.
As I listened to Schmidt describe how customers, developers and others are interacting with HanaHaus 24/7 using chat bots to reserve space more efficiently, I was struck by how much this innovation redefines community. The chat bots communicate in natural, everyday language, making interactions a breeze. Both café and community workspace, HanaHaus epitomizes what’s possible when workspaces themselves foster a vibrant culture of innovation.
The Iris SmartRack application in the supermarket is just as transformational. Camera recognition technology gives sales reps instant insights into consumer behavior around their products. With a real-time snapshot of what’s selling, they can collaborate with supermarkets to make better decisions for future mutual advantage. There’s no time wasted wondering what’s going on with products on the shelves because everyone can see what’s happening at any time.
Context along with the ability to respond to human and machine input are among the important distinctions in this next wave of applications. The first stages of digital business were limited to doing old things on new platforms. This next wave involves doing entirely new things anywhere at all. We may not understand the full impact of machine learning on every industry, but we can be sure it’s going to be massive.
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