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5 new applications for AI in 2020


Artificial intelligence (AI) is a rapidly emerging technology that's making waves in virtually all sectors to some extent. Here are five AI applications to be aware of this year. 

1. Predicting COVID-19 diagnoses before test results arrive

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically affected the world, and many health experts say prompt testing is essential for countries, cities, and states to emerge from lockdowns. Many places still struggle with testing delays and related supply shortages, however. 

Researchers took data from a COVID-19 symptom tracker and trained an AI algorithm to gauge the chances of a person with medical complaints having the novel coronavirus versus another ailment. The tool achieved nearly 80% accuracy based on demographic details and four key symptoms. Researchers believe it could find people with early signs of the virus, encouraging them to isolate sooner. 

2. Giving drivers better visibility

Some artificial intelligence 2020 options focus on transportation. For example, there are improvements made to self-driving cars, as well as products that use AI to rouse sleepy drivers. 

Bosch unveiled an item at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that connects to its internal monitoring system for cars. The company called it a Virtual Visor. It's a transparent product that detects the position of a person's eyes while they drive. Smart algorithms then process that information and precisely darken only the portion of the windshield most affected by the sun's rays that are making it harder to see. 

The Virtual Visor got the highest score for its category during the CES Best of Innovation Awards. It complements technology that detects drowsy or distracted driving and detects the number and positioning of passengers in the car to engage the automobile's safety features appropriately. 

3. Analyzing customer sentiment during call center conversations

Companies with call center teams frequently invest time and money into helping their employees sound confident on the phone. They provide them with plenty of practice opportunities and may give them formal training. Those things are undoubtedly important, especially since a skillful call center representative could increase trust and boost sales.

Companies are also depending on AI to improve call center interactions even more. The tools pick up on customer sentiment, helping agents know when to calm people before situations escalate. Representatives get clues from a person's inflection, cadence, and other things they may not notice without AI applications. 2020 is a year when customers have high expectations for companies. Technology can help those enterprises meet and surpass them. 

4. Offering live collaborative meeting transcriptions during online streams

The products available in Google Drive allow authorized users to collaborate on documents from wherever they are in the world. Some applications for AI do something similar by allowing groups to work together on live meeting transcriptions. 

Otter is an AI-driven transcription product that hears spoken words in real-time. It transfers the content to a document that users can see and review on any device. The company's team trained Otter on machine learning algorithms to ensure it understood the tremendous variations in live speech. Otter recently released an update that allows people to transcribe the content during live video streams. 

Whether people are taking classes online or meeting with colleagues, they can use AI to keep records of what happens. The collaborative aspect comes into play because users can highlight sections, add comments, or include photos to make the notes maximally useful. Otter even records both sides of a conversation when a user listens through a headset. 

5. Reducing food waste in the restaurant sector

Businesses with artificial intelligence 2020 plans may use the technology to minimize known issues. A company called Winnow has products meant to help restaurants curb their food waste. Cameras mounted on trashcans rely on machine learning to track waste and measure when it happens. 

The company's chief information officer, Peter Krebs, said that companies using Winnow typically see a 40-70% decrease in food waste within the first six to 12 months of use. That change equals food cost savings of 2-8%. 

Winnow's current target market is large-scale kitchens, such as those at hotels or contract catering operations. The hope is to eventually bring the technology to anyone who wants to use it, regardless of the size of their food preparation areas.

AI applications in 2020 to watch 

These five applications for AI have tremendous potential for solving problems, improving service, and making life easier. There are many other exciting ways to use artificial intelligence on the horizon, too, and people should aim to stay abreast of how such innovations develop. 

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