With understanding comes acceptance. The idea of artificial intelligence (AI) once seemed so far-fetched, but not anymore. As more consumers have come to learn about AI and how it can affect their daily lives, more see it as a benefit than a negative. Currently, according Weber Shandwick, 45% of consumers polled believe it will have a positive impact on society while only 7% see it as negative. This number bumps up to 52% believing AI will improve their personal lives versus 7% (the rest is undecided or unsure). Favorable views from consumers will likely increase with time.
AI is far more common than the average consumer may even know. In fact, most consumers already regularly interact with an AI system. Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s AI system and even Tesla all use artificial intelligence to interact with either the physical world or the digital world. The personal assistant applications and devices Alexa and Siri can interact with other devices through an Internet connection, all of which is triggered by voice commands. The same is true with self-driving cars with regard to their real-world surroundings.
AI in the digital world is based on algorithms. Netflix, for example, uses artificial intelligence to source entertainment titles, go over previously viewed content, ratings and a host of other information in order to offer recommended titles. Pandora, Amazon and Google use similar forms of AI.
In spite of all this, the #1 term consumers associate with AI is “robots.” So be it: let us make friendly “robots.” The more we describe these common applications as AI, the less consumers will fear that sci-fi robot uprising.