Japanese electronics major Sony somewhere dropped the ball when it came to Artificial Intelligence (AI). Sony, which is always on the forefront with latest technologies is far behind in the AI line when compared to its global competitors like Apple, Amazon and Google. However, it seems Sony's strategy of giving step sisterly treatment to AI might not have been a smart one. In the 2017 Economist Intelligence Unit report, Artificial Intelligence in the Real World, 75% of more than 200 business executives surveyed said AI will be actively implemented in their companies within the next three years. But as they say, better later than never. Realising the great potential that the technology holds, Sony has now decided to pull up its socks and catch on the AI train with its competitors before its too late.

In a recent statement, Sony has revealed that the tech giant is finally set to share its AI technology with engineers and developers so as to encourage them to incorporate them into their products and services. The Japanese electronics major has decided to open-source its Neural Network Libraries, a framework meant for developing artificial intelligence (AI) solutions with deep learning capabilities.

With the move of making its AI open source, Sony has joined the ranks of its competitors Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Facebook and many others who have also made their AI open source long ago. Sony is hoping that the open source AI won't only help developers in building smarts into their products, but it will also help them in further building on core libraries' programs. Sony believes this way AI will turn out to be more useful to everyone.

While Sony might have started out as an AI pioneer, but it lost track somewhere in the middle. Its latest products like the Xperia Ear, which makes use of Apple's Siri-like Xperia Agent, are nowhere near its competitors's Google Assistant or the Amazon Echo. In fact, the Sony assistant turned into a big embarrassment for the electronics major as first of all it doesn't have a natural speaking voice and secondly, it isn't as smart as its competitors.

However, despite the AI misses in the past, one has to give credit for Sony for the uniqueness of its AI offerings when compared to those of its rivals. Sony doesn't just offer a typical voice recognition, machine vision and other functions available from others in the market, it offers augmented reality AI, the Lifelog activity tracker app with action recognition tech and a real estate "price estimation engine." All these AI offerings does help Sony in standing out from the ones being offered by its rivals. Experts believes that if Sony stays focused and increases its pace a little, these type of specialized AI might just help it in speeding past its rivals in the AI game.

With the latest announcement, one thing is clear one cannot write off Sony from the AI game, at least not yet.

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