As a leader in the technology industry, IBM is constantly innovating and offering new services and products. As a marketing student, understanding the evolution of such multinational companies is important to gage where the market is moving and how it might affect other industries. There are a myriad of new projects currently being taken on by IBM; these are just a few of them.

1) Project DataWorks:

Project DataWorks is the newest addition to IBM’s cloud computing platform, Bluemix. This add-on allows companies to process data and information much faster, reaching speeds in the hundreds of Gbps. The main advantage that it offers is its ability to give big data a universal format. This means that data can now be processed by all types of endpoints, including: IoT devices, social media accounts, and company databases. This new software uses cognitive-assisted machine learning technology developed by IBM engineers to make data processing easier and more fluid. IBM performed a trial run at RSG Media, which works with analytics to help serve the media and entertainment industries. Through the use of DataWorks, RSG Media was able to reduce costs for one network client by $50 million due to efficient analysis of audience preference data.

2) Internet of Things:

Internet of Things is a new development of the Internet in which businesses attempt to use everyday objects to gain data on consumers by giving them network connectivity capabilities. IBM first announced its interest in this area when they announced in March of 2014 that they would be investing $3 billion in creating a specific IoT devision. So far, IBM has focused its efforts mainly in the healthcare and education sectors. Watson, their cognitive computing service known for beating Jeopardy, helps doctors diagnose patients and suggest potential treatment options. In New York City, oncologists at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center trained Watson to analyze medical research and process a patient’s medical history in order to give doctors a full list of possible options. Watson for Oncology has further developed in Asia, where more than 20 medical centers now use it in their treatment. Recently, IBM has also been working with the American Federation of Teachers to build a new program called Teacher Advisor. It is an innovative program that uses artificial-intelligence technology to answer teacher’s questions and suggest possible lesson plans. It will soon be available to third-grade math teachers across America for no charge. IBM hopes to add new subject matters and grade levels as the software is tested and developed.

3) Artificial Intelligence Advertising:

The Weather Company, which is owned by IBM, is currently introducing a voice and display advertising campaign driven by supercomputer Watson. This development could be the start of a revolution of marketing with a new frontier in voice and artificial intelligence based advertising. Through this new software, users will be able to interact with ads vocally by speaking into a microphone. This way they can ask Watson for suggestions. This form of communication will probably become more common as human-to-computer interactions progress in the near future. It is entirely possible that Apple’s Siri and Google’s Allo Assistant will soon take on this technology.

The goal of advertising is to create ads targeted to each individual based on their personal data. This technology will be able to do just that by creating personalized ads through algorithms and data processing powered by IBM. These advancements in artificial intelligence technology and the explosion of messaging apps are both helping to fuel the development of chatbots. Chatbots are software programs that use messaging as a way to carry out a wide variety of tasks from scheduling or buying a product.

Overall, IBM seems to be focusing on developing its cloud-based services. Obviously, IBM is facing stiff competition from Amazon, Google and Microsoft in this field, but they are upping the anti with heavy investment and increased promotion as seen in their recent segment on 60 Minutes. These new developments could disrupt countless industries, such as health care and education, and marketers must react accordingly. The world of data collection, interactive advertising, and even basic customer service is quickly changing due to growing use of artificial intelligence and cloud computing services.

Article by Shannon Peifer

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