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Chatbot market revenue to cross the billion-dollar mark by 2024, BFSI and healthcare to emerge as pivotal end users of AI based chatbots

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Technological advancement in communication is lately undergoing a once-in-a-decade paradigm shift. The growth of chatbot market bears evidence of this stupendous transformation, the impact of which is felt across the information technology domain. As artificial intelligence quickly spins out of the domain of academic research and enters mainstream business communication, an anticipated 80% of businesses expected to use some form of a chatbot. Driven by this extensive demand, chatbot market share will register a CAGR of 31% over 2018-2024.

Asia Pacific Chatbot Market Size, By Application, 2017 & 2024 (USD Million)
Asia Pacific Chatbot Market Size, By Application, 2017 & 2024 (USD Million)

Tech giants, ranging from Facebook and Google to Apple, Amazon and Microsoft have made commendable investments in developing sophisticated AI. These companies are indeed being given a worthy competition by startups dedicated to chatbot development and machine learning tools. As the advancement of chatbots and the quality of the same are deeply grounded in AI, businesses will benefit extensively with AI expansion. The effect of AI expansion is becoming apparent in industries such as banking, hospitality tourism, education, etc. Incidentally, these businesses have also been progressing majorly as chatbot market depicts an expansion.

In the past enterprises have tried to present a more professional image with the help of customer support personnel but often their unavailability over the phone has only backfired and frustrated the customer further. With chatbots, enterprises are updating to the 24*7 communication option and customers are deriving more satisfaction with the informed, non-intrusive and direct resolution of their queries. For instance, in the healthcare industry, hospitals have engaged chatbots to automate the process of booking doctor appointments. While such a conversation can be handled by a chatbot powered with Natural Language Understanding and AI, it eases the workload of the contact center by as much as 30% and makes hospitals more efficient, in turn strengthening the adoption of chatbots and augmenting the chatbot market growth.

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The chatbot market is at present being dominated by rule based and machine learning-based chatbots. While simple rule based chatbots are economic and effectively handle basic customer queries, their drawback is that they do not understand intent and context of a conversation. On the other hand, chatbots that are using pattern recognition, data analysis and predictive analytics as the three pillars for development are being more readily employed in businesses as all it takes for the chatbot to learn and enhance its data processing speed is continuous exposition and data feeding. This might explain why rule based chatbots, in 2017, despite having accounted for substantial market share, are forecast to remain modestly profit-oriented over 2018-2024. However, AI based chatbots, not surprisingly, are anticipated to record a CAGR of 53% during the same period.

According to experts, financial and healthcare institutions will have an easier time adopting chatbots due to their structured processes that make automation easier. For instance, Bank of America’s chatbot Erica made major headlines, having registered 1 million users within 3 months. Financial advice provided by the chatbot and easy transaction searches are the factors that made Erica such a big hit. Analysts listed transactions with popular merchants such as Walmart, Uber, Amazon, Costco, etc., as among the top queries that customers search for. When Erica is asked to show all transactions with a particular merchant, such as Amazon, Erica lists all debit, credit and check transactions, which makes online banking much easier to keep track of. Banks all over the world have already employed some form of chatbot or the other, making BFSI one of the fastest growing segments of the chatbot market.

It is essential to mention that chatbots are not being limited to a particular functionality. Instead, companies like Hugging Face are developing chatbots that can be used by teenagers to generate a digital friend to chat with and trade selfies. In a seed round, the startup raised $4 million for the development of a chatbot that focuses on emotions and entertainment. As per estimates, Hugging Face logs over a million messages per day. The aforementioned instance depicts that continuous research and development activities will characterize chatbot industry outlook in the years ahead, aiding the vertical to traverse a highly progressive growth path over 2018-2024.

Author NameParoma Bhattacharya

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Smart clothing market to outline the future of wearable technology, a CAGR of 50% estimated over 2017-2024

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With the recent advent of smart socks, smart shirts, & even smart jackets, smart clothing market has been gaining momentum in the category of smart and future wearables technology. Smart clothing or e-Textile is steadily becoming a reality, as sensors, electronic, and digital technologies have blended seamlessly to offer the functionality of smart devices to textiles & clothing. This convergence of textile and digital industries is set to bring huge commercialization and standardization to the worldwide smart clothing market. As per a report compiled by Global Market Insight, Inc., smart clothing market is projected to grow at a healthy CAGR of 50% over 2017-2024 in terms of shipments.

Germany Smart Clothing Market Share, By Product, 2016 (USD Billion)
Germany Smart Clothing Market Share, By Product, 2016 (USD Billion)

Smart clothing market: Enumerating the drivers and challenges

Smart clothing industry has been forecast to face certain challenges at its initial stages, notwithstanding the predictions made about it being one of most lucrative businesses in recent times. Some of these constraints lurk along the lines of high product prices, unreliability, and personal security threats. Moreover, on the technical front, the present-day challenges of smart clothing industry such as limited battery life, wireless technology, huge capital investment, wash ability, and complexity of data analysis remain consistent.

Data security and processing speed play a crucial role in healthcare, military & defense, and sports, on the grounds of which they can be classified as the prominent application arenas encompassed by smart clothing industry. The on-going research and advancements in sensor technology, the Internet of Things, and big data analysis, will prove to be reliable sources that can help smart clothing technology go mainstream. Industry experts foresee smart clothing market to move in a positive direction, as this technology holds immense growth potential across myriad application sectors. Companies are expected to pour in huge investments to develop this technology and expand its application spectrum. Moreover, with more and more players planning to harness the power of smart technology in the clothing industry, it is quite obvious for the wearables sector to witness a slew of product innovations. For instance, Google has been working with Levis on smart jackets that would allow the users to interact with their devices and control applications like music player, camera, and navigation. As technology evolves, it is expected that the global smart clothing market will facilitate colossal growth opportunities in healthcare, sports & fitness, military, and industrial applications.

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An insight into the application landscape of smart clothing market

Healthcare

Smart clothing is seen as a way to revolutionize and transform the healthcare sector, as it offers a huge potential for helping to improve an individual’s health. Smart clothing industry players are focusing on the idea of weaving electronics into a fabric like a shirt, or cap, or blanket that could perform specific patient care functions. Moreover, many medical device manufacturers and healthcare providers are actively monitoring smart clothing pilot projects and research that can track chronic diseases, help patients feel comfortable during hospital stays, track their health status, and boost health insights.

Military & defense

Several government institutions are investing in smart clothing industry to develop military uniforms that are technologically advanced and can also provide insights on the health of soldiers, injuries, the impact of bullets, explosions, and the like. This would generate lucrative growth prospects for smart clothing industry expansion in the military sector. As per estimates, the military and defense application within smart clothing market is estimated to witness the highest annual growth rate of 55% over 2017-2024.

The prominent players partaking in smart clothing industry share have been emphasizing on building partnerships with tech-giants & clothing firms, in conjunction with targeting their focus on diversifying their service spectrum. Recently, a Japanese startup firm Xenoma has launched a motion and gesture-tracking smart shirt called as the e-skin. Having been integrated with stretchable wires, sensors, and textile, e-skin is set to provide a larger platform for fitness and health monitoring. Ralph Lauren, Athos, and Catapult Sports are some of the other industry giants, who are actively investing in commercializing smart clothing technology in the coming years, which would undeniably create a profitable growth map for smart clothing market.

Author Name : Ojaswita Kutepatil

Global single board computer market to procure USD 1 billion in valuation by 2025, escalating developments in semiconductor design and manufacturing to augment the industry landscape

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The growing technological advancements in IoT coupled with the rising demand for smart connected devices will drive single board computer (SBC) market in the years to come. Basically a compressed, low-cost version of a typical computer, an SBC comprises similar components such as microprocessors, memory, input/output (I/O) and other features all embedded on a tiny circuit board.

China single board computer market size, by processor, 2018 & 2025 (USD Million)
 China single board computer market size, by processor, 2018 & 2025 (USD Million)

The product has become significantly important for developers seeking ways to design products with greater intelligence, performance and connectivity while reducing power consumption, costs and size. Indeed, the product continues to evolve in sophistication, while its range of possibilities expand. For instance, nowadays SBCs come with features like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi compatibility making them ideal in applications associated with IoT (Internet of Things).

The deployment of the Internet of Things (IoT) in almost all industrial applications will significantly boost the growth of the SBC market in the years to come. By using SBCs, manufacturers are now able to offer efficient IoT solutions to customers. The product has certainly propelled the growth of the IoT sector in the last few years, offering a much smoother commercialization. According to reports, business infrastructure and operations professionals are rapidly shifting towards IoT, while studies indicate that a major proportion of decision-makers are already using IoT-enabled applications from building connected products to transforming operational processes. With rising IoT adoption, IoT software providers like IBM, Cisco, Amazon, GE, and other giants are now developing solutions that simplify the design, creation, integration, and management of IoT infrastructure and enterprise data. This in consequence will majorly propel the product demand, eventually pushing SBC industry trends.

Technological advancements in embedded technology will boost the SBC market

Semiconductor processors, being the core of any SBC, are rapidly evolving to match the capability of modern day applications. To attract the vast tech-savvy customer base, engineers are constantly adopting advanced embedded technologies to gain a competitive edge. For instance, the neural processing unit (NPU) is anticipated to be the next focus for chipmakers as it helps speed up computer-vision applications, such as object and image recognition, and offers enterprises and manufacturers a more powerful platform for developing products used from smart building applications to driverless vehicles.

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Prominent companies are investing heavily in the development of these new technologies. The Chinese tech giant Huawei, in collaboration with Linaro, recently launched its new SBC called HiKey 970 AI computing platform which uses the world’s first AI mobile processor, Huawei’s Hisilicon Kirin 970 chipset along with a dedicated Neural Processing Unit (NPU). This is quite vividly, an instance that demonstrates how product innovation and investments in technological advancements will add momentum to the expansion of the SBC industry.

Powered by rapid technological developments, single board computers have paved their way into medical sector as well. Medical devices are increasingly being integrated with SBCs to perform and monitor a wide range of clinical processes. The product’s reliability, power and versatility have made it ideal for developing customized medical electronic devices, medical monitoring systems, fault-tolerant wearable computers and more. Strategic partnerships between tech giants and medical healthcare firms will thus majorly augment the growth graph of SBC industry.

While SBC market has quite appreciable consolidated itself worldwide, the APAC is said to emerge as a prominent revenue pocket for this industry in the years to come. This may plausibly be the case on account of the expanding electronics industry in the region. With the presence of several consumer electronics and tech firms, the APAC SBC industry is anticipated to depict considerable growth over 2019-2025. Growing government support toward building in-house consumer electronics, such as smartphones, tablets and other gadgets in countries like India and China, will also boost the APAC single board market demand.

Being highly-scaled versions of traditional PCs and laptops, SBC are expected to continue finding long-term application in IoT-driven verticals and consumer electronics. Powered by rapid technological advancements in semiconductor processors and AI, single board computer market is forecast to chronicle itself in the billion-dollar business sphere by 2025.

Author Name :Paroma Bhattacharya

An outline of POS terminals market with competitive spectrum as frame of reference, global industry to be characterized by a plethora of M&As & collaborations over 2018-2024

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Ezetap’s recent acquisition of FortunePay is a vital indicator of the growth in (Point of Sale) POS Terminals market. Similar to the growth strategies adopted by most markets, mergers & acquisitions and novel product launches primarily form the strategy landscape of POS terminals industry as well. In June 2017, Bangalore based POS firm Ezetap had acquired FortunePay, an online payment & physical payment service provider to banks in India. This deal is anticipated to help Ezetap avail the latter’s infrastructure and become a sole payment service provider for the traders in India. Earlier in June 2014, Ezetap had also collaborated with SBI (State Bank of India) to install 500,000 point of sale terminals across India over the coming five years. With more and more companies undertaking strategic tactics, POS terminals market is sure to carve out an appreciable growth map over 2018-2024.

UK POS terminals market, by application, 2017 & 2024 (USD Billion)
UK POS terminals market, by application, 2017 & 2024 (USD Billion)

An outline of the POS terminals market trends in terms of contributions by the industry veterans:

In January 2017, Fujitsu, a Japanese multinational IT equipment & service firm, launched Fujitsu TP8TM, a family of retail POS terminals, which was developed to optimize and improve the online payment performance across supermarkets, department stores, drug stores, and mass merchant stores. The new product also enhances the shopping experience of the customers across retail stores through its exceptional modularity. These new product innovations are expected to result in the robust expansion of POS terminals market.

In February 2017, OMA Emirates Group, a UAE based payment service provider, purchased MobiSwipe, one of the leading mPOS service providers. The acquisition will help OMA to expand its service portfolio across APAC, Middle East, and East Europe. MobiSwipe permits traders to make use of smartphones and tablets as POS terminal devices to accept payments via debit or credit cards. In a vital breakthrough, MobiSwipe, now a part of the OMA Emirates Group, in April 2017, announced the setup of more than 50,000 mPOS terminals in India within nine months. This is an instance of how major firms have been taking key initiatives to promote cashless deals in the country and explore new business growth avenues across India (Point of Sale) POS terminals industry.

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In May 2017, Mswipe, a startup firm in the  mPOS terminals industry,  formed a joint venture with PayU India, a digital payment service provider, to expand its online payment business through the purchase of the latter’s offline merchant acquiring business. As per the reports from reliable sources, PayU had acquired more than 9000 offline traders across India, who, along with their point of sale business will be moved to Mswipe. Dealers transacting with Mswipe can now use PayU India’s online payment options. According to expert opinions, the strategic alliance between the online payment service providers will benefit both in terms of revenue generation as well the consolidation of their positions in POS terminals market.

In July 2017, ScanSource Incorporation, a leading service provider of point-of-sale, barcode, networking, and data solutions, acquired POS Portal Incorporation, distributor & renter of POS devices, for USD 144.9 million to extend and improve its POS payment services across the globe. This is ScanSource’s sixth acquisition since last three years, with its recent purchase being Intelisys, a technology service distributor and master agent of carrier, telecom, & cloud solutions, for USD 83.6 million in June 2017.

The same year also witnessed NEXTEP SYSTEMS, a provider of self-order POS services, form a strategic alliance with LevelUp, the largest mobile payment platform developed by Massachusetts-based startup firm SCVNGR. The alliance will enhance the service efficiency of both the firms by offering more effective and user-friendly online payment options. Speedy   self and mobile ordering operations, ensuring a seamless and personalized experience for the users are expected to spur the business expansion and ROI of both these firms, thereby providing a boost to POS terminals industry. Global Market Insights, Inc., claim POS terminals market share to surpass USD 125 billion by 2024.

POS terminals industry is an evolving business sector with big players investing heavily in R&D activities to develop new technologies and products for gaining competitive edge. It is more likely that rapid expansion of POS terminals market will encourage new service providers and manufacturers to enter the business further encouraging the existence of fierce competition in the industry.  VeriFone Systems Inc., Panasonic Corporation, Ingenico Group, PAX Technology Inc., and Toshiba Corporation are some of the major brands of POS terminals industry.

Author NameSaipriya Iyer