retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Seattle Times reports on a new RBC Capital Markets analysis suggesting that "Amazon.com’s Alexa artificial-intelligence software could generate $10 billion worth of business a year for the company, stemming from device sales and voice orders from Amazon’s site ... their projections show that by 2020 the sale of products that incorporate Alexa — the Echo line of devices, for example — could reach $5 billion a year."

Indeed, the RBP analysis projects that "Alexa could become 5 percent of Amazon’s business within three to five years."

At the same time, the Wall Street Journal has a story saying that "people in the technology industry are increasingly thinking about how such voice-activated devices can be made useful in the workplace. The products aren’t quite ready for office prime time yet. The workplace offers challenges that experts say intelligent assistants built for home use so far haven't effectively met, mostly in the area of voice recognition."

But there is a lot of research and development taking place, as AI-oriented companies believe that there is enormous upside to this segment.

You can read the WSJ piece here.
KC's View:
Enormous upside? I can't imagine that there is a downside.

AI business applications may be on a different and somewhat slower development curve than home applications, but the impact long-term could be at least as great, if not more significant.