Google Gets ready for the Artificial World

For Google's Pichai its all virtual.

Times of India reports forget personal computer doldrums and waning smartphone demand. Google thinks computers will one day cease being physical devices. "Looking to the future, the next big step will be for the very concept of the 'device' to fade away," Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote on Thursday in a letter to shareholders of parent Alphabet. "Over time, the computer itself — whatever its form factor — will be an intelligent assistant helping you through your day." Instead of online information and activity happening mostly on the rectangular touch screens of smartphones, Pichai sees artificial intelligence powering increasingly formless computers. "We will move from mobile-first to an AI-first world," he said.

Pichai was, in part, talking his own playbook because Google has been working on AI and related technology such as machine learning for years and this advanced software already powers web services and apps such as Google Photos and Google Translate. Google is also a major investor in Magic Leap, a startup that has raised more than $1 billion to build an augmented-reality system that inserts 3-D moving images and other information into the surroundings people see. Pichai is on the board.

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