The artificial intelligence (AI) market has been on a swift growth path for several years – so much so that the industry is expected to reach $42.4 billion in 2023. This momentum will continue, and we’re starting to realize it with the debut of powerful new AI-powered tools and services across industries.
There has been a shift from the well-understood role of AI in analysis and prediction – helping data scientists and enterprises make sense of the world and chart their courses accordingly – to new and innovative systems, like DALL-E, that are producing entirely new artifacts that have never been seen before.
But what’s driving this exponential growth, and how will it affect the space in the coming year? Here are three key AI trends that will take shape in 2023:
1. AI democratization will continue
AI is becoming a fundamental differentiator for business. If you can’t find deeper insights in data, quickly and at scale, your competitors will. There is far less supply than demand, and top engineering and data science talent will remain extremely expensive. As a result, more AI consultants and greater availability of low- and no-code features will become differentiators. This democratization of AI will help simplify the adoption of these technologies in all vertical markets by those with varying levels of experience.
[ Also read Responsible AI by design: Building a framework of trust. ]
Additionally, cloud vendors will increasingly combine their services building blocks to include AI, leading to powerful, widely available features and solutions. This is important for two reasons:
- Whether they know it or not, more people will be using AI than ever, putting it in the hands of the masses.
- We’re starting to realize the bottom-line business drivers of AI, which will trickle down from the aforementioned major cloud vendors to smaller tech players, leading to even greater AI adoption.
2. Generative AI will become commercialized
Generative AI is having a moment, and we’ll start to see many more products and services come to market in 2023. This area is exciting because many largely untapped but valuable use cases exist.
One particularly bright spot is generative AI-powered language applications. In gaming, for example, a user can opt to sound like their on-screen character. In a virtual meeting, a person with a cold can make their voice easier to understand, enabling them to focus on their work contributions rather than potential misunderstandings.
Unlike AI-generated imagery, which has recently gained a lot of attention, business use cases are lacking. Speech-to-speech (S2S) technology, on the other hand, has the potential to change the way we work. For customer service, this can be a game-changer. For example, contact center agents can use generative AI to clearly understand callers from anywhere in the world, helping them resolve problems faster and feel more empowered.
3. AI ethics will become a top priority
Despite its proven value and great potential, AI still has complex legal and ethical issues. The severity varies – new implications can range from negative to dangerous. From deep fakes to biased algorithms to models that have degraded over time, these are all scary reminders that regulatory frameworks must adapt to the fast-evolving AI market. And while regulatory and legal frameworks are currently in the works, with an AI Bill of Rights in the near future, businesses must approach AI safely and ethically.
The first class-action lawsuit in the US against an AI system was recently filed, and it won’t be the last. Technology may be leaps ahead of the legal industry, but as AI embeds itself into our everyday lives, companies and governments must get serious about safe and responsible practices. We will also see more transparency around cases like this and learn how to avoid these missteps for future deployments.
[ Learn the non-negotiable skills, technologies, and processes CIOs are leaning on to build resilience and agility in this HBR Analytic Services report: Pillars of resilient digital transformation: How CIOs are driving organizational agility. ]
Although we’ve been saying it for a decade, 2023 will be another high-growth year for AI. The commercialization of new products and features, strides in access and affordability, and a focus on responsible practices will open up disruptive use cases for the enterprise and beyond.
It’s an exciting time to be in the AI space, and it will be interesting to see how the industry progresses over the next 12 months.
[ Check out our primer on 10 key artificial intelligence terms for IT and business leaders: Cheat sheet: AI glossary. ]