ABI Research: AI investment is surging due to COVID-19
New York-based tech consultancy ABI Research has stated in a press release that, whilst biometric investment struggles, AI has been gaining traction.
The reason, the firm explains, is a logical one: government regulations seeking to limit contact and cross-contamination have made biometric equipment unappealing to the tech market, whilst the need AI-powered automation to maintain business continuity is growing.
Dimitrios Pavlakis, Digital Security Analyst at ABI, considers that the biometric sector’s loss could reach approximately US$2bn, which could have significant implications for the public sector.
“Fingerprint biometrics vendors are struggling to uphold the new stringent hygiene and infection control protocols. These regulations have been correctly introduced for the safety of users and personnel, but they have also affected sales in certain verticals,” he said.
Adapting to the new market
As more businesses adapt to the ‘new normal’, it may also behove the biometrics industry to follow suit. One reason for AI’s growing fortunes amongst the disruption, Pavlakis postulates, is its flexibility and diverse applicability.
“AI biometric firms are adapting to the biological threat. Biometric technologies are currently undergoing a forced evolution rather than an organic one, with artificial intelligence biometric firms spearheading the charge.
“New IoT and smart city-focused applications will enable new data streams and analytics, monitoring infection rates in real-time, forcing new data-sharing initiatives, and even applying behavioural AI models to predict future outbreaks.”
Indeed, the role that AI plays in ushering the new normal into existence could be significant, as well as its continued influence in business and infrastructure.
AI: the engine of the future economy?
In a previous article, ABI outlined some of the core areas which could see increased deployment of AI. These included AI-based surveillance systems to monitor body temperature, such as those developed by Kogniz Health and autonomy in the freighting and logistics sector.
Business Chief recently explored new developments in the latter via Blue Yonder’s AI-powered Luminate Planning suite:
Answering questions that have long-preceded the COVID-19 pandemic but have now increased in importance, with Luminate Planning, Blue Yonder hopes to tackle global disruption, chain complexity, regional sourcing and more with AI and ML technology. The portfolio features:
A reimagined, customisable, collaborative and workflow-based user experience.
Constant real-time end-to-end data collection from suppliers, distributors, customers and many more.
AI-powered predictive analytics and forecasting, including disruption prediction and automated problem-solving.
End-to-end visualisation of the entire supply chain, allowing short-term operations to be automated and for increased emphasis on mid to long-term strategic planning.
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.