What We Learned from CES 2019: Emotions and Business

The recently concluded CES 2019, the world’s biggest show for consumer technologies, was as great an event as they get. It was Neurodata Lab’s first international business forum of such caliber, and it met and exceeded our wildest dreams. During the four overwhelmingly busy, energizing, and productive days we were able to talk to the representatives of international business and media communities, gather all sorts of valuable insights, and understand the business issues that Emotion AI-based technologies can solve.

In this article we will share some of our takeaways, outline the most prominent trends in emotional technologies, and summarize our experience at CES 2019.

Here and here you can read some independent opinions on Neurodata Lab’s Emotion AI. You can also see for yourself what our booth’s visitors thought about our solutions in these two videos.

Emotion AI solutions we brought to CES 2019

For this important international conference we chose to present the following two solutions:

Real-time emotion analytics for customer experience management

With the help of a simple webcam and microphone, Neurodata Lab’s real-time emotion analytics tracked the emotions and reactions of people coming to our booth. The technology analyzed incoming visual and audio data and used it to calculate a Customer Satisfaction Index for each guest.

Applied in a business setting, the solution can analyze customer emotions or employee performance and carry out real-time AI analysis of the data. This is a smarter, much more unbiased alternative to such business tools as email surveys, mystery shoppers or «rate the service» buttons – practices that tend to be subjective and inconsistent and often fail to produce accurate and meaningful data.

At the booth: Neurodata Lab’s real-time emotion analytics for customer experience management

Emotion AI business application for robotics and IoT

The same technology can be used in offices and at points of sales where employees are robots. Neurodata Lab’s cloud technology integrated into our partner Promobot’s service robot also presented at the CES booth enabled it to simultaneously recognize the emotions of several people it was talking to, change its reactions accordingly, and measure how satisfied these people were with the interaction.

With its ability to calculate a Customer Satisfaction Index based on the analyzed emotions in real time, the system can continuously assess the quality of service provided by a robot – a function of particular value for businesses. At the same time, the robot can also collect customer feedback on the service provided at that particular office or point of sale with its subsequent automatic analysis and alert system.

At the booth: Promobot the Emo-robot with Neurodata Lab’s Emotion AI

The insights from businesses – what’s next for Emotion AI

We were able to talk to more than 2,000 people and show them how our solutions work. One in ten left their business cards with us, and companies from many different industries expressed their keen interest in our technology. This was a great opportunity to connect with our target audience and gain a deeper understanding of their business needs and concerns. As far as emotional technologies go, we observed several pronounced trends:

• Full-time face-to-face service remains one of the key points in the customer journey map, especially at banking and financial services, hospitality & travel, retail, telecommunications, and other service-oriented verticals. We have received requests from such corporate giants as Walmart, Citgo Petroleum Corporation, Bank of America, Honda, Société Générale Group, to name just a few. It appears certain that there is and will continue to be a demand for Emotion AI-based solutions capable of analyzing customer emotions and managing customer experience through gathering objective live feedback and hearing the customer’s voice.

• With the growth of service robotics industry, companies are interested not just in robots per se, but in particular business roles robots will be carrying out at points of sale and in service offices. The ability to track how well a robot performs and estimate its value for the business can be a turning point in the client’s purchase decision. Business community is more interested in real-time emotion analytics already available today than in technologies of tomorrow.

• That being said, however, corporate giants’ innovation centers do look to the future. They are seeking effective ways to improve their customers’ interaction with the product, to make it more intuitive, and to have a thorough grasp of customers’ attitudes and emotions towards their creations. Some of their goals can already be accomplished with the help of existing emotion analytics, but as the technologies of the future become more human-like, it will be certain to become a full-fledged reality.

The current state of the CX industry

Here’s what Olga Serduikova, Neurodata Lab’s Chief Marketing Officer and Business Development Leader who represented the project at CES 2019, has to say about the current state of the industry:

«In recent years, CX Management has become a hot topic for many companies. Today’s competition is not so much about the product or price, but about the customer experience a business can provide. New types of customer service are emerging, such as service robots, smart mirrors, smart shelves in stores, etc., and this certainly gives companies new opportunities to attract and retain customers. New methods for collecting and analyzing data, and monitoring and controlling customer experience are emerging. Many of these methods belong to the field of cognitive services and use AI technologies, including text recognition, computer vision, Emotion AI. And this opens up a lot of exciting new opportunities for businesses to enter a new level of customer service and CX.»

You are welcome to comment this article in our blog on Medium.