UK retailers failing artificial intelligence test, Microsoft

UK retailers failing artificial intelligence test, Microsoft

UK retailers are tapping into artificial intelligence solutions at a much slower pace than other industries, according to a new report from Microsoft.

This shows that 56% of UK retail companies are still not using AI in their operations, when compared to 44% of financial services companies and 40% of manufacturers. Of the leaders in the retail sector, around 61% are currently deploying AI technology.

“Clearly, for the sector to thrive in the future, the speed of change must increase,” Microsoft says. “Yet, in fact, many experts predict adoption will remain slow, particularly in the big box retail sector due to the challenges of scaling their digital offer quickly and cost-effectively enough to compete with native online retailers. What is clear is that change cannot be ignored. AI will impact retailers of all shapes and sizes.”

Recent Rackspace research paints a more optimistic picture, however, showing that UK retailers clearly recognise the significant opportunity that AI presents, with a quarter of IT decision makers in retail planning to implement the technology in-store over next 12 months.

“In fact, across both in-store and e-commerce deployments, AI will account for 7.5% of total UK retail sector IT budget over the next year,” comments Lee James, EMEA CTO at Rackspace.

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