Artificial as the name suggests something which is a copy of the original or something natural. Similarly, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is that branch of computer science which emphasises on the development of an intelligent machine that is capable of thinking and working like human beings. In today’s era, Artificial intelligence has become a very popular topic among various businesses. Across industries Artificial Intelligence is making inroads, the telecommunication sector is also witnessing AI being deployed to improve its customer services via virtual assistant and chatbots.
For instance, Vodafone has introduced AI across all its operations globally to improve its products and services and run businesses. It launched ‘TOBi’ which is its machine learning chatbot in 11 markets, and it was proven very popular. With the implementation of AI into the business in Italy, the company’s 2/3rd customer contacts got automated. The advantage of this was that the human customer agents were able to focus more on the other challenging issues.
AI Application in the telecommunication and banking sector:
Communication service providers are currently focusing on AI investment on 4 major segments such as:
- Network optimisation;
- Preventive maintenance;
- Virtual assistants and
- Robotic process automation (RPA).
In the banking sector, AI is used for fraud detection in retail banking, determining the credit score based on the predictive analysis and chatbots for improving customer experience in multiple languages.
Banking sector plays an important role in the growth and development of the world economy. A bank is primarily associated with the financial transaction, and each transaction must be appropriately documented. For this, the banks maintain the record in their database using which they capture details to decipher if an account holder transacts via ATM, net banking, telephone banking or mobile banking. Any transaction carried out, including fraudulent activity, by an individual can be well captured on a real time basis from any location.
In the US, JP Morgan Chase is the largest bank and has a control on more than $2 trillion of assets. JP Morgan has also included AI in its business in natural language processing in equity investing, recognizing fraud and risk mitigation and in predictive analytics for smart documents intelligent pricing.
Power of Artificial Intelligence:
In today’s era, Artificial has its footprint in almost every sector. Artificial Intelligence has even entered in individual’s day to day life, whether on the phone using Siri or using Amazon’s Alexa. Technologies are getting advanced, and now the concept of smart homes are also coming into the picture in which the job in the house can be done through voice commands.
Although the advent of AI has reduced a considerable amount of human effort, it has increased the fear amongst the individuals of losing their job.
Why are Australian companies shifting towards Artificial Intelligence?
Government focus on AI:
As per the report of ACOLA (Australian Council of Learned Academies), AI has enhanced Australia’s happiness, lifted the economy, enhanced environmental sustainability and has formed a more unbiased, inclusive as well as fair society. Artificial Intelligence at present times in reorganising the global economy significantly and as stated by the World economic forum, Artificial intelligence would contribute US$16 trillion by 2030.
AI in Australia is in the emerging state as compared to the European Union, Japan, the United States and the United Kingdom.
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews in the early April 2019 addressed that AI has huge potential and wide scope in the future. It would help in boosting productivity, create new industries, offer more inclusive services as well as job openings in the future. She stated that she understands the potential of this technology and its benefit and how it would help to boost the Australian economic growth.
But at the same time, she also understands the issues and the challenges which the users might face using this technology such as privacy, transparency, data security, accountability, and equity. The impact of AI is likely to be on a large scale, and the government has an obligation to guarantee the best possible outcomes.
The Coalition Government in Australia is investing in developing domestic AI capability which would create jobs as well as open economic opportunities. The government has provided more than $29.9 million in the 2018-19 Budget to raise this segment and also aid the responsible growth of AI.
On 7 November 2019, Karen Andrews confirmed the trial of eight principles with an objective to drive more ethical development of AI.
In this article, we would look at two companies Telstra from the Telecommunication sector and NAB from the banking sector whose name came into the picture as they are trialling a series of eight principles confirmed by the Minister for Industry, Science and technology. These principles include:
- Human, social and environment well-being;
- Human-centred values;
- Privacy protection and security;
- Reliability and safety;
- Transparency and explainability;
We would see the influence of Artificial Intelligence in these companies.
Telstra Corporation Limited (ASX: TLS)
Telstra Corporation Limited (ASX: TLS), is a telecommunication carrier and it provides telecommunications and information services like internet and pay television, and mobiles.
TLS’s AI Application
Telstra is the first company in Australia to launch 5G services and provide 5G handsets. As per one of the media releases in February 2019, Telstra, Commonwealth Bank of Australia along with Ericsson, announced their plan to study as well as trial 5G edge computing technologies for the financial services segment. The collaboration between the three companies was the first in Australia which aimed to bring the technology providers close to the financial services providers to study 5G edge computing use cases like artificial intelligence along with network capabilities by testing complete banking solutions over 5G.
Belong, a division of Telstra was recently in the news for establishing an intelligent automation guild to enable an growth of technology throughout the company.
National Australia Bank Limited (ASX: NAB)
National Australia Bank Limited (ASX: NAB), provides banking, financial and related services.
NAB using Artificial Intelligence:
NAB during October 2018 collaborated with Microsoft to construct a proof of concept ATM (Automatic Teller Machine) that will utilise the cloud as well as AI technology. The cloud-based application was created with the help of Azure Cognitive Services aimed to enhance the client experience by eliminating the requirement for the physical devices or cards to withdraw money through the ATMs. Clients who choose this facility would be able to withdraw money through the facial identification technology along with a PIN.
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