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BlueFountainMedia Greatest Promise AI Apr2020Marketers and advertisers have been exploring how artificial intelligence (AI) can streamline and improve processes such as collecting and analyzing customer data and creating and placing advertisements. But how is the use of AI affecting consumers? A recent survey of more than 1,000 adult consumers by Blue Fountain Media tries to answer that question. Here are a few findings from the survey.

Effects on Personal Life

Some 38% share of consumers surveyed say they are comfortable with how quickly AI is being incorporated into their day-to-day lives, outnumbering those (28%) who express some discomfort with the speed of change.

For 4 in 10 (39%) respondents, the biggest impact that AI has had on them is through Smart Home devices such as voice assistants, smart thermostats and smart security.

These types of devices have seen growth in the past couple of years, with 29% of US households now owning a Smart Speaker and the number of Smart Home devices sold this year expected to grow 15% year-over-year.

Other areas of personal life that consumers consider to be the most impacted by AI include maps and navigation such as GPS and self-driving cars (18%) and facial recognition for security purposes (14%).

Customer Service Interactions

Only 4% of consumers say that AI’s biggest impact on their personal life relates to shopping and customer service with personalized bots. But how do consumers feel about the use of AI for customer service interactions?

The largest percentage (41%) of consumers say they don’t enjoy having customer issues resolved without human interaction, and generally like to deal with real people when they have an issue. Another 6% say they don’t enjoy having customer issues resolved without human interaction because AI has failed to resolve issues in the past satisfactorily.

And, although there are consumers who enjoy having issues resolved without human interactions (25%) and who think AI-powered technology makes issue resolution quicker (16%), other research confirms that few consumers enjoy communicating with companies that do not allow for the option of communicating with a human.

The Great Promise For AI

And what do consumers see as the greatest promise for AI in the future? About one-quarter (24%) believe that AI’s greatest promise lies in the healthcare field, in making more accurate diagnosis and treatments in healthcare. Time will tell whether AI is able to rise to the challenge in the current pandemic.

Beyond healthcare, transportation (20%) and security (15%) are the areas in which the next-largest percentages of respondents see AI’s greatest promise – allowing for faster and safer driving and for safety from terrorists and criminals, respectively.

Interestingly, 1 in 8 (12% share) believe that AI will have its greatest impact on the entertainment sector, in tailoring movies, books, TV and live experiences to their tastes. One in 10 envision AI’s promise to be greatest in retail, providing a more consistent and personalized experience.

More results from the survey can be accessed here.

About the Data: Results are based on a survey of more than 1,000 consumers ages 18-65.

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