Of the many announcements at the recent Google I/O 2017 conference, only one got me truly excited. The soon to be available Google Lens.
Although chatbots have been around in some form or another for years, the hype cycle around them truly began when Facebook announced their bot platform for Facebook Messenger just over a year ago. They recently showed their commitment to chatbots at this year’s F8 developer conference. Since their bot platform was released, thousands of companies have had an attempt at releasing a chatbot and experimenting with how it best connects them to their customers.
It seems like not a day goes by without seeing an article on how machines are going to take over all of our jobs. Or how a computer beat a human at Jeopardy, chess or most recently poker. Terms such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and neural networks are the latest buzzwords you might be hearing in relation to this.
There is an overwhelming amount of startup resources out there today. Although that's not a bad thing the big question is where to start? I've read and listened to plenty of them and the quality can vary greatly.
Rather than provide an exhaustive list, I thought I would highlight some resources I've found useful and have also recommended to clients who are looking to immerse themselves in this space.
If the latest reports are to be believed then it appears we’ve reached peak app. According to a recent survey, almost two thirds of smartphone users download an average of zero apps per month. Not to mention that once an app has been downloaded, retention rates drops down to just 11% after just one week.
So how do you increase app retention and engagement once it has been downloaded? The landscape which apps live on - namely the mobile operating system, is beginning to change dramatically. A definitive shift in how people will be interacting with their mobile devices has begun. So lets look towards the future and the best ways apps should be built to maximise engagement.
Ad blocking has suddenly become a big topic now that Apple has allowed availability of ad blocking apps.
It’s not like ad blockers didn’t already exist but with web browsing increasingly shifting to mobile and given Apple’s large share of the mobile market, their actions can herald major changes to the tech, online publishers and the advertising industry (remember Flash?). Apple are fully aware of the impact of this decision. This is about their war with Google and the battle to dethrone the latter's dominance in the online advertising space.
The way online ads are currently delivered is terrible - they deserve to be blocked. However, blocking them isn’t necessarily a good thing if you want to keep reading content for free.
Let’s take a closer look at what’s going on.
There's recently been a fair bit of discussion in the tech and finance sectors regarding currently being in the middle of a 'tech bubble' - similar to the 'dot com boom' experienced during the late nineteen nineties. I thought I would take a look at the differences between the two tech bubbles and what the ramifications might be this time around.
I remember reading Chris Anderson's 2010 article for Wired, 'The Web is Dead' back when it was originally published and recently stumbled across it again. It highlighted the demise of the browser based 'open web' and the takeover of mobile apps.
I thought I would revisit the article's predictions, assess where things are at in 2015 and ponder where things are headed.