As artificial intelligence (AI) has become the talk of the town in various industries including information and communications technology (ICT), global companies have aggressively competed to secure the leadership in the technology this year.
According to related industry sources on December 26, Google is distributing the software development kit (SDK) of its AI voice recognition assistant service “Google Assistant” so that numerous smartphone manufacturers can use it and it has also expanded the provision of developer toolkits to many different countries such as Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan and the United Kingdom.
Global chip manufacturer Qualcomm has formed a strategic collaboration with China’s leading search engine Baidu Inc. to develop Internet of Things (IoT) and AI voice recognition assistant service for smartphones. Accordingly, the two companies’ technologies will be integrated into Qualcomm’s chipset “Snapdragon 845” to be released next year.
German automaker BMW plans to offer Amazon's Alexa AI voice assistant in cars sold in the U.K. and Germany as well as the United States from the middle of next year. Once Alexa is equipped in cars, drivers can set up a GPS navigation device, play music and check the weather and news. Ford Motor is also developing its technologies to install Alexa in cars.
In China, various companies have created the AI alliance with home appliance producer Haier Group as the center. Chinese search engine Sogou, e-commerce giant Alibaba, voice recognition service provider Sound Conex and smartwatch producer Mobvoi and Haier entered into a partnership with Chinese research institutions to co-develop AI-based smart home platforms.
Alibaba's travel service platform, Fliggy.com, has cooperated with hotels to use the AI technology in hotel services. Based on it, hotel guests can use the AI service ranging from making a reservation to checking in and checking out. For instance, face recognition device automatically performs a check-in when hotel guests come in. After the check-in, they can control curtain, lighting and television with voice command through an AI speaker.
There are also various cooperation projects in South Korea to expand the AI business. LG U+ and Naver introduced LG U+ smart home service “U+ Our Home AI” and Naver AI speaker “Friends Plus” in a bid to dominate the AI home media market in advance. The two companies also plan to integrate the AI speaker in home IoT and Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) in the future.
Samsung Electronics signed a partnership to connect its AI platform “Bixby” with Kakao’s AI platform “Kakao I.” Kakao I will be more widely used in Samsung Electronics’ home appliances in the future. Kakao also entered into a partnership with Hyundai Motor to preoccupy the car infotainment platform market. Kakao I was applied to Hyundai Motor’s Genesis G70 in September. LG Electronics also used Naver’s Clova AI platform in its AI speaker “Think Hub.”