Back in the day, I remember how exciting it was to be building a business during the web to mobile transition. Being at the forefront of that transition has given me a unique perspective on the potential of emerging AI technologies. In the early days of the web, explosive growth was fueled by the advent of mobile computing. Finally, you could do things that you never thought possible. In our case, we could finally build an app that allowed our users to access our software out in the field with nothing more than their phones.
Today, we take it for granted that mobile computing is a standard. But back then, everyone was sitting at a desktop computer. Today, I’m feeling the same level of excitement as we move from SaaS and mobile to AI-powered software. The parallels between these transitions are evident and a lot of new billion dollar businesses are going to be minted over the next 10 years.
Reflecting on the mobile era, the first stage was mobile infrastructure. Various platforms like Java Mobile (J2ME), Palm OS, Microsoft Mobile, Blackberry, Android, and iOS competed for dominance. Wireless carriers were just starting to build out faster mobile internet like 3G. The second stage of the mobile era, mass adoption of mobile apps, wasn’t even a thing yet! But two years later mobile apps dominated the software space!
In the current AI landscape, we are still early like the first stage of mobile’s infrastructure build out. Contenders include OpenAI, Meta’s Llama, Google’s Bart, Amazon’s recent investment in Anthropic, and numerous open-source models on platforms like Hugging Face are just a handful of examples that are battling it out to become the AI platform of choice. Like mobile where everything but Android and iOS eventually faded. We’ll probably see two major AI platforms emerge over the next several years.
This transition from SaaS to AI has got me super excited. We haven’t even started stage 2 yet, which is the mass adoption of AI-powered software. Unlike the early days of mobile, where the focus was on competing mobile OS platforms, today’s emphasis is on building AI infrastructure. We are witnessing significant investment by major companies, setting the stage for future success.
As of November 7, 2023, the AI landscape mirrors the historical evolution of mobile platforms. I anticipate the consolidation of competing platforms, leaving a few long-term success stories. Is it going to be OpenAI and Microsoft or Google? Who knows! But early focus on infrastructure development presents a wealth of opportunities for those keen on shaping the AI landscape.
In the mobile era, app development flourished on winning platforms like Android and iOS. Similarly, the potential for AI applications is vast, with a focus on leveraging AI with killer UIs to solve real-world problems. That’s where SignalFlow fits in. While stage 1 of the AI revolution is playing out as I write this, we’re building the emerging software applications like AI-Sales Automation and Assistant Software in parallel. What gets me so excited is that we are so early and the opportunities are vast.
Two years ago, an AI sales assistant would have been designed around a rules-based system. It would require so many rules that it would be near impossible to build one that could be flexible enough to be used across multiple companies. A system like this would only exist as a one-off custom solution designed for a specific company’s needs. Similarly, sales automation without AI would have been built around a system of rules. These rules would quickly add up and become inefficient. On the other hand, AI Sales Automation doesn’t require a long list of rules. Instead, it can be trained to recognize patterns, which is much more flexible and efficient. This will allow companies to build multi-tenant solutions without the need for a rules-based system.
The excitement lies in the transformative power of AI applications beyond conventional use cases like chatbots. All the rage is Chatbots right now, but I think Chatbots are just the beginning. I think AI chatbots are the equivalent to the novelty of having a camera on your phone. It was a big deal when everyone first saw it, but the real big impact apps came much later and were 100X more powerful in productivity and moving the economy. Drawing parallels to mobile history, where once unimaginable computing feats became commonplace, AI applications are poised to evolve in groundbreaking ways. For example, SignalFlow’s AI-Assistant Software is changing the way companies hire sales talent, train new sales hires, and reduce customer acquisition costs. SignalFlow’s Sales Automation AI is changing the way sales people optimize time.
The shift in focus from infrastructure to application development is underway. Early adopters like SignalFlow will bring innovative ideas that will lead to substantial productivity gains and economic success, similar to the wave of software companies created during the mobile era.
I think the future of AI is promising, and the real opportunities lie in building applications that leverage AI with a purposeful UI. As we navigate this paradigm shift, the potential for groundbreaking ideas is vast, making it an exciting time for entrepreneurs in the AI space. I wish all the builders out there GOOD FORTUNE!