Another year has passed and humanity, for better or worse, remains in charge of the planet. Unfortunately for the robots, TNW has it on good authority they won’t take over next year either. There’s always 2020.

SwissCognitiveIn the meantime, here’s what the experts think will happen in 2019:

Dialpad , an AI startup created by the original founders of Google Voice, tells TNW that all the hype over robot assistants that can make calls on your behalf may be a bit premature. Etienne Manderscheid, VP AI, Machine Learning, for the company says “robots may attempt to sound human next year, but this will work for few domains in 2019.”

She continues:
Despite the hype brought on by Google Duplex and resulting conversations around speech synthesis, true text-to-speech technology will not be able to carry on conversations outside of the specific domains they’re built around for at least another few years. It’s not just a matter of building a system that perfectly reads back written English. To sound human, the AI has to know which words to emphasize, where to pause, where to stutter, and all this requires understanding what is being said.

Dan Sommers, Senior Director, Market Intelligence Lead at Qlik , brings a different perspective. AI may not be ready to replace humans in the workforce, but it’s becoming an invaluable tool across all domains. Sommers told TNW:

In 2019 we will see artificial intelligence evolve to be designed around humans. AI will likely add more jobs than it takes away, eliminating manual processes and leaving workers with the time needed to be empowered by AI.

Across the information value chain – from reading the data, to preparing it, to critically analyzing it with less bias, to presenting contextual results – AI can and will remove many of the bottle-necks that make users give up when tackling intensive data exploration.

Machine learning and telemetry will also capture the power of the collective, which can be fed back in a virtuous loop, further improving and contextualizing the user experience. Ultimately, data and analytics will become more human than ever, with AI in the mix.

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Eyal Gura, Co-founder and CEO of Zebra-Med, an AI medical startup, had our favorite prediction. He thinks the market is going to finally begin to normalize so that the wheat (AI that works) gets separated from the chaff (AI that’s all hype). He told TNW:

For 2019, we’ll expect to see that on one hand, the air of the AI hype balloon is depleting for companies who have been using AI as a buzzword, as the industry realizes that startups need to have actual products, business models and sufficient funding, aside from AI. While on the other hand, we’ll see a natural healthy evolution of some companies, and the beginning of strong revenue streams with economic use cases. This will expand and scale in 2020-21 to gradually meet the early AI hype expectations.[…]

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