The ever closening presence of automation has a vast majority of the world at least a little bit worried. And every year we see more and more advancements in this field, bringing us closer to a potential world in which much of everyday life and our work lives is automated. So with that yin and yang of utopian and dystopian future possibilities in mind, for this special holiday episode of Hashtag Trending we look at our predictions for automation in 2020.

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When many people think of automation, their minds wander to a world in which robots do everything, completely autonomous of any human control. And we don’t think such a future is that far fetched and may actually be closer than many would think. We have already seen a rise in the use of industrial robots, as stats from Statista show that 2019 saw the installation of 413,000 industrial robots, with those numbers only expected to rise in the future. But now a new wave of robots in coming, the rise of service robots. Projections from Deloitte show that the market for such robots has been steadily gaining on the industrial robot market, and should actually pass it in the next year or two.

Our next prediction is related to the brain that makes robots like that possible: artificial intelligence. We believe that the world will begin to see AI operating in places that has not been seen before. For example, AI could be set to make a major move into the edge. For those who are not aware, edge computing is bringing the computing power, like AI for example, right onto devices, allowing them to perform complicated procedures entirely independently, even if they lose connection with their network. And AI should make big headway in this space in 2020. In fact, according to statistics from Market Watch, the market for edge AI software is expected to more than triple in size from $355 million USD in 2018 to a staggering $1,152 million USD in 2023.

And finally, we believe the rise of AI and automation will be a major reason why we see the downfall of support centres for devices. Much of the duties that would fall into the hands of such support centres will now begin to shift into the hands of the users, with the aid of AI built into the devices designed to solve those problems. According to stats presented by Nextiva, by 2020, 85 per cent of all customer service interactions will be automated, while over 60 per cent of Americans say that they prefer a self-service system to actual human interaction.



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