Microsoft's layout AI is a gambling game that will rather miss the game.

October 17, 2021

Microsoft also created an AI research division at the end of September this year, hoping to make breakthroughs in the field of artificial intelligence. The AI ​​Research Division brings together more than 5,000 computer scientists and engineers from Microsoft Research, and is now the fourth largest unit alongside Microsoft's Windows, office and cloud departments.

At present, the AI ​​Research Division has the following four areas of focus:

Agent, changing the human-computer interaction mode through a personal digital assistant like Cortana.

Application, inject AI into other applications such as Skype, Office365.

Services, open the same capabilities (such as visual, sound and other cognitive capabilities, machine analysis capabilities) injected into Microsoft applications to application developers around the world.

Infrastructure, Microsoft uses Azure to develop the world's most powerful AI supercomputer and open it to everyone.

Will AI be a new wave?

When Microsoft talked about "injecting" AI into every application, it would be reminiscent of Bill Gates's 1995 internal document called "Internet Wave." In this document, Bill Gates describes his vision for Microsoft's development and affirms the future of the Internet, giving the Internet the highest importance.

Is the establishment of the AI ​​Research Division now another message of "wave"? Will Nadella, the current head of Microsoft, give AI the highest importance?

DirecTIonson Microsoft analyst and former Microsoft employee Rob Sanfilippo thinks this is not the case. He thinks that Nadella definitely wants to make some achievements in the company. AI is the latest direction that Nadella tries to break through, but it can't be with Bill Gates. The direction of the Internet is comparable.

Rob Sanfilippo believes: "AI has been over-hyped, I don't fully believe in all the prophecies about AI, some are real and will be successful, but some things will never be realized." Although Microsoft has made a lot of achievements in the agency and BOT framework, the actual value of these technologies is still very doubtful. Rob Sanfilippo believes that this is only a part of the technology that looks good.

Problems with Cortana

The trend of Microsoft's smart field has spread to the traditional banking industry. In the future, users' banking business on Cortana will become an important way to access AI. Microsoft also offers Cortana Smart Suite for enterprise enterprises and developers to add other intelligent features such as machine learning and image recognition to their applications.

Sanfilippo thinks that Cortana is actually not good at what to do. Cortana is on the Xbox and is on the phone. Now Windows10 also has Contana built in. Although it looks good, it is not applied as Microsoft claims. Many people I think that Cortana can't really provide what they want.

At present, Microsoft is facing a severe situation. Competitors such as Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant have provided standard methods for end users to access artificial intelligence services and enterprise artificial intelligence systems. Contana is only a digital assistant equivalent to Windows Phone, with a small number of users. Even few developers have done development integration.

Sanfilippo pointed out that capital's enthusiasm for artificial intelligence has gradually calmed down, and it is entirely possible for Microsoft to give up Contana within two or three years.

Strong cloud advantage

The good news for Microsoft is that even though Cortana is relatively weak, it has a real competitive advantage in the cloud, and it can take advantage of Azure's computing power for intensive AI computing, such as up to 600,000 words, 1440 pages of war and Peace, it takes only 2.5 seconds to translate from Russian to English, and it can also be delegated to third-party platforms.

Microsoft also bought LinkedIn for $26 billion, and got a social graph of more than 425 million business users. This provides a strong backing for composite services based on AI and social networking, such as connecting LinkedIn to provide expert advice for ongoing projects.

Would rather kill, never let go

IDC's research director David Schubmehl has a more optimistic view of Microsoft's AI efforts and said that AI will become the core of Microsoft in a short time. He said: "I think that all enterprise software will have AI over time. Function, we can already see the budding of this trend."

But Sanfilippo believes that Microsoft's goal is to make sure it doesn't fall behind. Four years ago, IBM was the only company to do cognition and AI. Then Google said that it would add artificial intelligence to everything. Salesforce released Einstein, and Oracle released adaptive intelligence applications, which is why Microsoft will set up AI research. Business department.

When the mobile computing revolution took off, Microsoft was eliminated, but now it has begun to recover by acquiring applications and services on iOS and Android, so the development of artificial intelligence has brought a lot of fear to Microsoft, Microsoft I am afraid that I will miss the wave again, which is the biggest driving force for Microsoft to embrace artificial intelligence technology. In other words, Microsoft's layout of AI is a complete gamble, it is not entirely sure that AI will become a wave, but just in case, Microsoft must embrace AI technology.

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