Consumers want AI-enabled smart homes, but not smart workplaces

Consumers want artificial intelligence (AI) in their homes, but not in the office, according to a new report from O’Reilly.

The report, based on a poll of more than 2,000 consumers, asserts that people are excited about AI in the context of smart homes, security systems, travel recommendations and virtual assistants. However, when it comes to AI in the office, some are still afraid of job losses.

For this reason, O’Reilly argues, if AI creators want to see their solutions enter the workplace, they need to focus on consumers and the benefits AI can bring outside work first.

While automation is the most in-demand AI application in a professional context, it was cited by only 22 percent of consumers. Respondents were even less inclined (11 percent) to use it to make business decisions.

When it comes to their knowledge of AI applications, consumers are most familiar with email categorization, online social media marketing, and team management software. Going forward, people are also eager to see AI help them with fraud detection, as well as its implementation in autonomous vehicles.

“Consumer conceptions of AI are still very much influenced by popular culture, science fiction and the virtual assistants they use every day. However, there are strong areas of overlap between AI developers and AI users,” said Rachel Roumeliotis, Vice President of Data and AI at O’Reilly.

“Both groups appreciate the success of smart home technology and are watching the development of autonomous vehicles very closely. It’s up to these sectors to capitalize on the hype, but the results are also a call for the creators of work-focused AI to make solutions that capture the imagination and generate excitement.”

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