IBM's Watson predicts top Christmas gifts

20/11/2015

IBM has launched a retail app powered by its AI tool Watson to help make the holiday season easier for shoppers.

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The IBM Watson Trend app distills the sentiment of tens of millions of online conversations daily, by scouring 10,000 sources across social media sites, blogs, forums, comments, ratings and reviews. Every day, it updates its list .

Unlike other apps or lists that provide a static ranking of “hot” products, the Watson app reveals how consumers feel about the products they are considering or have purchased.

Using natural language and machine learning technologies, the app is able to pinpoint patterns and trends to reveal why people are choosing certain products or brands.

Users can view the top 100 products and the stories behind them across three categories – consumer electronics, toys and health and fitness. Gifts currently trending include Star Wars Lego, the Apple Watch and Nike running shoes.

As well as helping out seasonal shoppers, the app also reports consumer buying habits. IBM predicts that for the first time this year mobile will overtake desktop for people seeking a bargain, with mobile sales set to increase by more than 36 per cent in 2015.

IBM Watson is an artificially intelligent computer system capable of answering questions posed in natural language.

The machine astonished audiences worldwide in February 2011, when it consistently outperformed its human opponents on the American quiz show Jeopardy:


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