This Week in AI: Interactive Evolutions, Enterprise Wins, Biometric Payments

AI, artificial intelligence, voice assistants

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) hasn’t even celebrated its first birthday yet. 

But the innovative technology continues to be the gift that keeps on giving.

Another week has gone by, and with it an increasing cascade of announcements showing how the novel tech has continued to layer itself into everyday life by making the mundane — across both personal and professional occasions — just a little bit easier and more streamlined for everyone involved. 

It was just last week the AI industry went down to Washington. Now, the sector is trying to make inroads with enterprises and tap into the big bucks that comes from a winning B2B play. 

As generative AI technology continues to grow by leaps and bounds, these are these stories that PYMNTS has been following. 

Generating Payment Wins With Generative AI 

Blame it on the pandemic-fueled rise of digital engagements, but customer — and even commercial — expectations have been retrained around speed, convenience and security. 

And as these behavioral expectations become status-quo needs, organizations are turning to AI to help deliver seamless and engaging transactional experiences at scale. 

Amazon, for example, is tapping a winning combination of computer vision, object recognition, advanced sensors, deep machine learning models and generative AI to power its growing suite of Just Walk Out stores with next-generation biometric payment capabilities.

Elsewhere, instant commercial transaction vehicles for B2B firms capable of handling the complexity of moving money seamlessly between banks, FinTechs and card networks, with all the right levels of risk and control, are increasingly becoming a reality, thanks to AI.

And on Monday (Sept. 18), at Sibos 2023, Intellect Global Transaction Banking (iGTB) launched an AI-powered co-pilot tool for commercial bankers to better serve their business customers. 

Generative AI is Evolving Into Interactive AI 

This could also be the last year the phrase generative AI conjures the bleeding edge of technical capability, as the technology itself is getting more multimodal and adding more capabilities. 

Interactive, multimodal AI will be able to do things like produce a text analysis when given a spreadsheet or chart, and design engineering equations for a product after seeing a wireframe sketch.

Already, some of the top AI firms are taking baby steps toward that premise.

OpenAI announced Wednesday (Sept. 20) the launch of DALL-E 3, the latest version of its AI image synthesis model, which features full integration with OpenAI’s ChatGPT product and will be available for OpenAI’s Enterprise and Plus subscription customers early next month.

The move comes on the heels of a sweeping set of upgrades to Google’s chatbotBard, that were released Tuesday (Sept. 19). The upgrades are meant to further integrate the AI tool into end-users’ lives by providing more sophisticated and streamlined capabilities. 

Also on Wednesday, Amazon unveiled a fresh suite of AI enhancements to its voice assistant Alexa, introducing intuitive decision-making capabilities derived from natural conversation. 

This, as PYMNTS Intelligence finds that generative AI is raising the bar when it comes to consumer expectations for smart voice assistants, as digital-first consumers increasingly expect voice AI technologies to make their everyday routines intuitive, simple and more connected. 

As for non-voice assistance, spending platform Brex has launched an AI-powered assistant to help employees simplify expense management and make it more efficient. 

And coincidentally, ChatGPT, the AI chatbot developed by OpenAI, is experiencing a surge in traffic at the same time students are returning to school.

AI’s Document Analysis Skill Helps Thaw Corporate Mistrust

Institutional distrust of generative AI’s propensity to hallucinate is thawing as larger, publicly accountable corporates come around to the time savings it can offer when it comes to structuring and querying internal data corpuses with bespoke large language models (LLMs). 

Morgan Stanley announced Monday that it is launching a new generative AI tool for financial advisers and their support staff that is designed to better facilitate access to the bank’s massive library of research reports and documents.

Also on Monday, enterprise generative AI platform Writer announced a new $100 million funding round to further commercialize its LLM for the enterprises — a sign of investor confidence in generative AI’s business-centric utility.

A few days later, on Wednesday, document automation firm Ocrolus debuted Instant, its AI-powered document processor that helps lenders analyze bank statements and other financial documents for faster lending decisions while cutting risk.

According to PYMNTS Intelligence, 56% of those who have a positive view of AI’s potential impact on their work say it will help them be more efficient, freeing up valuable time for them to focus on more strategic and creative aspects of their work.

But that doesn’t mean pitfalls don’t exist, and that firms should rush head-on into integrating AI solutions.

Microsoft, which announced it would launch its own AI assistant, Microsoft Copilot, on Sept. 26, accidentally exposed 38 terabytes of private data while publishing open-source AI training data to cloud-based code hosting platform GitHub. 

Additionally, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released guidance on Tuesday for lenders who utilize artificial intelligence (AI) and complex models in their credit decision-making processes, emphasizing the need to provide specific and accurate explanations when making credit denials.

AI is Here to Help 

YouTube announced Thursday (Sept. 21) that it will soon launch several AI tools for creators to help push content innovation forward, including AI-generated videos or image backgrounds based on prompts entered by the user; a tool for suggesting AI-generated ideas for videos to create by analyzing the content the creator’s audience is watching on YouTube; and another mobile-centric tool called YouTube Create.

Also on Thursday, Uber Freight and autonomous driving software builder Waabi partnered to accelerate the deployment of AI-powered autonomous trucks at scale, aiming to deliver a turnkey Driver-as-a-Service solution. 

Trucks aren’t the only thing becoming autonomous with the help of AI. The finance office is, too.

Meanwhile, delivery company Arrive launched a new platform Monday that aims to leverage AI to address package theft and optimize cost-efficiency in the industry; while another AI company in the space, Levelpath, raised $44.5 million to launch its AI-powered procurement platform.

And, while a group of prominent authors in the United States filed a lawsuit against OpenAI alleging copyright infringement, lets end this week on a high note — AI may be able to avert humanity’s upcoming demographic debacle, or at least temper its effects.

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