Who Will First Monetize AI at Scale

The battle in the artificial intelligence(AI) market has been heating up. IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are all continuously releasing impressive technologies in the space that are capturing the minds of developers and customers. From a market perspective, AI is called to become a pillar of the next generation of software technologies. Without a doubt, we can expect all those software giants to capture segments of the AI space. However, the most interesting question is who can monetize AI at scale first.

Monetizing a technology at scale goes beyond its technical capabilities. Typically, the path to monetization at scale is a combination of different factors such as the following:

· Leveraging well-established asset like user or customer community as the main distribution mechanism.

· Expand the offer across different distribution channels.

· Provide a compelling value proposition for prospects to become buyers.

· Build network-effects into the product so that paying customers can attract other paying customers.

· Nature of the transaction: Large (enterprise), small (consumer).

· Duration of the sales cycle.

There are other factors that can influence the monetization at scale of a specific technology but the aforementioned ones must be definitely considered when evaluating a monetization model. In the AI space, the picture is pretty complicated as the top vendors already enjoyed certain level of success and impressive access that can be devoted towards the monetization of AI. We’ve tried to summarized those factors in the following matrix:

Google Wins

The previous matrix clearly highlights the potential of Amazon, Facebook, Apple, IBM, Microsoft and Google to monetize AI. However, we think in the short term Google has a bit of an edge and more options to quickly monetizing AI at scale. Here are a few points that might help to explain that reasoning:

· Wider AI Assets: Google has been investing in AI across different technology areas such as mobile, cloud, DeepMind and even chips.

· Google Search Distribution: We can’t underestimate the power of Google Search as a distribution channel.

· Consumer and Enterprise Presence: Google is incredibly well positioned to monetize AI in both the consumer and enterprise markets.

· Google Car: This is an incredibly unique asset that has no equivalent among the other vendors

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