Microsoft to infuse its AI capabilities across industries

Microsoft to infuse its AI capabilities across industries
Photo Credit: Reuters
20 Jul, 2018

Tech giant Microsoft plans to build artificial intelligence into all of its applications, a report in Indo-Asian News Service said.

Addressing partners at an event ‘Microsoft Inspire’, chief executive Satya Nadella said that the firm will infuse everything with AI, which will have perception and language capabilities built into applications, the report said.

He also said that Microsoft’s Azure Cloud services will go beyond the data centre. “We are going to take Azure to Azure Stack, to Azure IoT Edge and to Azure Sphere. This is a ubiquitous, distributed computing fabric,” IANS quoted Nadella as saying.

According to Nadella, while current advances in AI are “pretty stunning”, what’s going to come will be even more profound. This potential of AI makes it important to turn every industry, from healthcare to agriculture, AI-first, the IANS report stated.

Microsoft’s AI push

In the past few months, the Redmond-headquartered company has been developing its AI capabilities for a number of applications.

Most recently, retail giant Walmart said it had partnered with Microsoft to use its cloud and AI technology. Engineers from the two firms will collaborate to migrate and to Azure. Microsoft has also been developing capabilities to do away with cashiers at retails stores.

In May, reports emerged that Microsoft was testing a social bot-cum-digital assistant called Xiaoice that can make phone calls. The company has been piloting the bot in China and can be accessed on messaging apps such as WeChat, but on Microsoft’s own smart assistant, Cortana. 

The company is also creating an AI programme to deal with fake news on its search platform Bing and professional social networking site LinkedIn.

Microsoft has developed AI-powered security tools to help small and medium enterprises guard against cyberattacks. Called Microsoft 365 Business, the new security tool is equipped with features to protect against phishing, ransomware and also has device protection function for employees at work.