What the SXSW has shown us about the future

Munich/Austin, 22nd April 2019: Here’s what the future looks like – already: food from the 3D printer, personalised by reading out my DNA – and ordered with my voice. The world’s largest and most important digital fair is behind us, and the gloomy mood of the previous year has disappeared.

After the hype: AI is a tool and productivity driver

Instead of the past gloomy mood, progress is now driving innovation in all areas of life, and the relevant topics are becoming more numerous and connected.

AI has gone through its first hype cycle and is now increasingly affecting the real world. Interfaces and services from IBM, Microsoft, Google, and others have made massive progress in the last 365 days. The question is no longer whether, but how AI can help us with product and service development. This is not about science fiction fantasies, but about practical, often very specific use cases, where complex problems are solved with the help of artificial intelligence in a highly efficient way. At its core, AI makes applications smarter, facilitates personalisation, and enables highly complex queries.

In his presentation “AI is your new design material”, Josh Clark emphasised that artificial intelligence helps us with time-consuming, repetitive, and error-prone tasks so that we can focus on the really important things like empathic communication, strategic thinking, and creativity again.

Let people do what they do best; let machines do what they do best.

Josh Clark

More than setting the weather forecast and alarm clock, voice has become the new operating system of the internet

Those who don’t take advantage of AI’s potential for efficiency will waste valuable resources in the medium term and ultimately, be left in the dust by the competition.

Even more concrete and already clearly noticeable is the radically changing way how we deal with our devices. Whether it’s smart speakers, auto-interfaces or our mobile assistants – in the future, we’ll speak more than type. Half of all interactions we have with a computer at the end of 2020 will be based on voice input, according to the FTI study. The exciting question here is: How does a search work in this rapidly growing ecosystem? How is traffic growing, how is content being controlled, which players are driving business here?

These questions are still largely unanswered. Only one thing seems certain: An undefined ecosystem with far-reaching consequences for all industries must be conquered. The new keyword is Voice Search Optimisation, and it will present us all with completely new challenges – because content, products and brands that cannot be found in the internet’s new voice operating system will simply become irrelevant.

Facebook is dead, long live the Messenger

Another symptom of the shift toward a personalised relationship with technology: Social networks are dying. 44 percent of the highly relevant target group between the ages of 18 and 29 have banned Facebook from their smartphone in the past 12 months, according to a PEW Research study. Data corruption, questionable business practices, and unmoderated hate speech have permanently damaged confidence in the big networks. There is only one winner left: one-on-one communication in Messenger. The internet, with all its facets (information, communication, consumption…), is increasingly moving into Messenger services.

With over a billion daily (!) users in China, WeChat is already demonstrating the new evolution of the Internet. WeChat users pay by mobile with their Messenger, do their banking, order taxis, give restaurant reviews, configure their new automobiles, or buy cinema tickets – as well as telephone, chat, and send voice messages for free. Just as Facebook became the operating system of the internet in the early 2010s, Messenger platforms will now shape user communication in the future.

In the future, Conversational Design will guide the user’s booking journey

All three key trends – one-to-one messaging, voice interaction with products and services, and AI as a tool – are intertwined. Users are increasingly interacting directly with digital technologies – whether text- or voice-based in chats – to control devices, find information, buy products and services, and engage in direct dialogue with brands.

Anyone who thinks this development is over sees that without AI and machine learning, the dialogue-driven booking journey of the future will not be realisable on a broad front. We meet this challenge with Conversational Design. It will, however, be necessary to rethink established user experience and user interface practices – in some cases completely anew – to effectively serve our customers’ new expectations in the very near future.

PS: Digitalisation will not stop for anything – not even the human body

Package delivery by flight drone, total immersion by AR/VR/MR and self-driving cars – we’ve all heard and seen this before. Now, digitalisation is entering the human organism: Microscopic bots are already flowing through the bloodstream and reporting in the event of imminent danger, be it stress or a pending heart attack. The first computer game that can only be played by three people at the same time, solely by the power of their thoughts, is now live. And your own DNA fuels the hyper-personalisation of all areas of life. Personalised medication is just the beginning; the next consequence will be food from the 3D printer, optimised for your personal hormonal balance.

Digitalisation on the plate, in the body, controlled via language and supported by self-learning cloud AI in the 5G network. The future is today – but what does that mean for your business? Let’s talk about it. We’re ready. You too?

You want to learn more about Ray Sono? Get in touch!

You want to learn more about Ray Sono? Get in touch!

Nancy Forner
Marketing & Communications
Contact us here

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