The Metaverse is already here: 5 companies building our virtual reality future

“If you believe Facebook, the future is a virtual reality “metaverse.”

The tech giant, which changed its name to Meta last month, plans to invest $10 billion this year to develop products that support augmented and virtual reality — a robotic hand, high-tech VR glasses and sophisticated software applications, to name just a few. Analysts expect the company to spend at least $50 billion to achieve its promise of a virtual reality future.

But Meta is far from the only player. In fact, a half-dozen other companies are already building out the hardware and software that will be the next generation of virtual interaction — something Wall Street sees as a $1 trillion market. The companies include Google, Microsoft, Apple, Valve and others building out products for work and communication. Smaller startups are likely to join them as investors flood into the market.”

https://www.cbsnews.com/amp/news/metaverse-is-already-here-5-companies-building-our-virtual-reality-future/#app

Domino’s utilises Azure to cook up innovation boost

  • “Microsoft is delighted to announce that Domino’s Pizza Enterprises has signed a three-year strategic technology and services agreement to use Azure to help accelerate the company’s modernisation and expansion plans.
  • Despite the constraints of the global pandemic Domino’s continues to grow rapidly; in the last financial year it served 281 million pizzas, opened 285 new stores around the world, and recorded $3.7 billion worth of network sales. This financial year it expects to open a further 500 stores.”

https://news.microsoft.com/en-au/features/dominos-utilises-azure-to-cook-up-innovation-boost/

Microsoft acquires Seattle startup Suplari, which uses AI to analyze corporate spending

  • “Microsoft said it will pair Suplari with Microsoft Dynamics 365 ‘to help customers maximize financial visibility by using AI to automate the analysis of current data and historical patterns from multiple data sources.’
  • Suplari analyzes procurement and spending data flowing into various enterprise systems. It can provide recommendations for cost savings, risk exposure, and other efficiency gaps. The software serves as an alternative to compiling data in an app such as Excel or Tableau and having a team of analysts comb through the information themselves. Suplari manages more than $180 billion in spend across millions of transactions per month.”

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.geekwire.com/2021/microsoft-acquires-seattle-startup-suplari-uses-ai-analyze-corporate-spending/amp/

Does AI need EQ?

  • “Xiaoice, a Chinese chatbot developed by Microsoft in 2014, is different from other AI assistants.
  • With Xiaoice integrated in almost all Chinese-brand smartphones, the company is training its algorithms on data from 758 million online users.
  • Its AI framework has enabled users to create over 6 million…customized “AI beings” that can have completely different personalities from the original Xiaoice.”

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.protocol.com/amp/does-ai-need-eq-2652953733

Why everyone in the Financial Services Industry should be a change agent

  • “Emerging markets in Asia, in particular, have recently seen a spike of 60% increase in contactless payments, with an eightfold growth in paperless B2B payment flows.
  • McKinsey says this physical-to-digital shift is set to accelerate even more this year. And FSI organizations need to ride the wave, or risk being left behind.
  • Fundamentally, I see four areas of change that FSI firms need to embrace: technology, data, customer centricity supported by processes, as well as people and culture to drive systemic innovation.
  • According to Deloitte, technical debt in the form of legacy infrastructure and data fragmentation across the enterprise continues to impede banks’ digital transformation initiatives. In response, finance leaders expect to increase cloud investments, with more than half saying that their firms will increase spending on data analytics.”

https://news.microsoft.com/apac/2021/04/13/why-everyone-in-the-financial-services-industry-should-be-a-change-agent/