China's Baidu Unveils New Artificial Intelligence Assistant

By M. Grace, January 05, 2017 21:01 PM

Tech Tycoon Baidu

China's search giant Baidu unveils recently its artificial intelligence assistant named "Xiaoyu Zaijia" (Little Fish).

Little Fish reportedly can respond to voice commands using combination of text, speech and pictures. It is also dependent on a touchscreen.

There has so much Little Fish can do to users like answering questions, finding local services, playing music, making video calls and even controlling smart home devices.

"AI has been growing steadily - every year our AI has been 50% better," Baidu Chief Scientist Andrew NG told the BBC at the CES tech show in Las Vegas, adding that the AI is the "new electricity."

"Those of us on the inside feel the acceleration now but we have been feeling it for the last decade," he added. "Just as 100 years ago the electrification of our society transformed industry after industry, I think AI tech has now reached that stage."

It has been known that the hardware used to develop the AI is from Chinese robotics firm Ainemo Inc. and uses DuerOS as the operating system.

Morever, "Little Fish" will be initially launch in March in Chinese market and can only rexongize Chinese languages for now.

"What we have seen so far in terms of digital assistants and smart speakers is very much first generation and it has all been about voice," said Geoff Blaber, tech analyst at CCS Insight."I would certainly expect that over the next 12 months we will see the next iteration of assistants that do integrate a number of different ways of interacting with the device - not just video but also gesture control.A richer variety of interaction methods helps bridge the gap in terms of the user experience. When they first start using one, a lot of users find it a steep learning curve."

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