India has some of the finest engineering talent, with more than 1 million engineering students graduating each year, and there is every opportunity to use AI to help the economy blossom in every vertical beginning from healthcare to automobile to government services.
There is a lot of hype about Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the fear it has unleashed. There is a lot of buzz that it would soon replace humans. But to be honest, there’s no need to fear, not yet. But what is important to note is that AI is helping us become better at decision-making.
Interestingly, India is soon becoming the centre of AI and a lot of startups are using it to help clients achieve better business outcomes. AI is about data and the ability to recognise patterns from that data.
AI means different things to different people. On one level it is deep learning (where you teach the algorithm to understand different types and variety of data sources). Think about it like a child learning to walk, see and feel. Then there is Machine Learning (ML) (where you teach the algorithm to recognise patterns and throw insights based on parameters set by the data scientist) and finally AI (where the algorithm learns by itself and suggests insights).
While we are in several stages of this journey in India, it has become a national mission across China, USA, and other countries to use the power of AI in all walks of life. Here is the list of startups that are going to matter for AI and Machine Learning in the coming year.
Founded by Satyakam Mohanty, the company uses AI and ML for the pharma and consumer industries to seek answers from their databases on a real-time basis. The intention is to reduce dependence on analysts and utilise the entire set of reports created by analysts. Most of the time, business leaders use data from the first few pages of the report and ignore the rest. The Lymbyc platform ensures that insights from all reports that go in to a database are crawled and visualised to provide insights. If done manually then it would take days to provide insights from the right report, Sometimes searching for the right report requires people who can collate everything together. The company is self- funded.
Actify Data Labs
Founded by PE firm True North and Hindol Basu, the company is a good mix of data scientists and engineers. Their AI platform will make the likes of Philips and GE happy that even startups can take them on. The Actify algorithms work across industries But to take an example, in healthcare, Acitify can help radiologists sieve through thousands of scans and help the doctor find missed malignant occurrences and increase the outcome of care. If done manually this requires an army of keenly trained eyes and doctors.
Have you sat in a business meeting with your board breathing down your neck? You know the feeling, there is no answer to what data will be of use when tricky questions are asked.
Most organisations have this data, but are seldom able to use it in the right manner. Enter Rockmetric, a company founded by Nimish Mehta that uses algorithms to create better and real-time result finding search capabilities for structured data. Nimish is of the opinion that rather than hyping AI, it's better to educate a business on how technology can solve their problems. Rockmetric’s algorithms are able to pull data faster and make business accountable. Nimesh and team call the platform an ‘on demand digital data analyst’. The company is self-funded.
Machines may be considered lifeless, but they have a rate of failure, which companies have different ways of measuring., One is the number of times and the hours they operate. Petasense founded by Abhinav Khushraj and Arun Santhebennur is making inroads across several manufacturing plants. The algorithm on the device recognises vibrations from gears and motors to figure out the rate of failure in the machine. The solution is able to save millions in maintenance cost for the oil and gas industry. The company has raised a Series A round from True Ventures.
Backed by 3One4 Capital, ScoreData is using ML to help contact centres of companies get better at serving customers. Its algorithm understands customer data and their interactions of the past with the contact centre and is able to predict which customer reacts in a particular way, thereby empowering the associate to handle customer queries with the power of information rather than wait for the customer to tell them the problem. Founded by Moidin Mohiuddin, Vasudev Bhandarkar, and Prasanta Behera, three industry veterans from the IT industry Scoredata uses algorithms to score customers and agents and offer insights to the contact centres to provide better customer service.
While these startups are all set to make an impact in the next financial year, don’t let the word AI distract you. Focus on how technology solves your business outcomes and work with a startup accordingly.
With India leading the way in AI, the question is can we create the next big product story? This is the question that innovative startups need to answer.