Welcome!

@BigDataExpo Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, AppNeta Blog

News Feed Item

IBM Watson Group Invests in Fluid to Transform the Consumer Shopping Experience

Watson Group Invests in Fluid, Inc. to Advance New App into the Marketplace That Empowers Online Shoppers with Watson's Expertise and Personalized Advice

ARMONK, N.Y., April 22, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Imagine having access to your own personal shopping assistant anytime, anywhere. Thanks to a partnership between IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Fluid Inc., the ultimate shopping advisor, powered by Watson, is poised to transform the consumer shopping experience.

IBM Corporation logo.

Together, IBM and Fluid Inc., are working to redefine today's e-commerce experience by evolving it beyond the traditional criteria of price, convenience and selection, and adding a transformational new factor: the expertise and personalized advice of an in-store sales representative.

The consumer shopping experience is ripe for Watson's ability to interact naturally with people, while serving as an advisor that thinks, learns and empowers its users with insights unlocked from data. A recent study from the IBM Institute for Business Value of more than 30,000 global consumers shows that 40 percent of shoppers use social, location and mobile technologies for information gathering, and yet are not likely to use them to purchase products.

So what is hindering that sizable share of the consumer market from making purchase decisions from their devices? To start, the current state of online and mobile shopping yields a time-consuming, inefficient experience, as consumers comb through websites for information, link by link, or enter keywords into search engines and hope for the best. Today, 50 percent of consumers spend 75 percent or more of their total shopping time conducting online research, according to data from the e-tailing group and PowerReviews.

Something crucial is missing from the typical online and mobile experience: the thoughtful help of an expert sales representative, who is knowledgeable, relatable and ready to advise you on important purchase decisions.

All of that is about the change. IBM and Fluid Inc., are embarking on a new mission to transform the way consumers shop, through personalized, digital experiences with a personal shopping concierge that understands and advises its users on key purchase decisions. IBM and Fluid's collaboration aims to spark an "industry first," as together they remove the pain points of digital commerce, and replace them with the best of what in-store retail shopping has always offered.

The solution: the Fluid Expert Shopper (XPS) made with IBM Watson, an app that gives consumers the power to ask the app highly specific questions, as they would a sales associate in a store, and receive personalized advice that truly satisfies their needs.

In partnership with The North Face and other consumer brands, Fluid XPS will take advantage of Watson's ability to answer consumers' questions and learn from their responses, engage in real-time conversations and then tailor suggestions for products in a rich and relevant manner. Watson will understand the context of its users' questions, and continuously learn about their needs based on the information they share.

As an example, one could ask Watson for advice on what outdoor gear is best-suited for a five-day, June hiking adventure in Phoenix. Fluid XPS would call upon Watson's understanding of natural language to identify clues from the user's question suggesting particular needs around weather, terrain and trail conditions.

When complete, Fluid XPS will draw on data, including the brand's product information, user reviews and online expert publications through IBM Watson, to provide consumers with informed recommendations according to their needs and desires. Consumers will receive valuable insights in making smart, satisfying purchases and be able to interact with Watson on desktops, tablets and smartphones for the first time.

To further advance this new e-commerce dynamic, the Watson Group is today announcing a new milestone in its collaboration with Fluid, to ensure they can go to market faster and bring their vision to life in a range of markets. Drawing from $100 million that IBM has earmarked for direct investments to fuel a new class of cognitive apps, the Watson Group is making an investment in Fluid, Inc., to help deliver the first-ever cognitive assistant for online shoppers into the marketplace.

In creating an app that interacts naturally with users, understands the context within their needs and learns to improve how it provides assistance from a user's mobile device, IBM and Fluid are tapping into a crucial, yet unmet marketplace need.

"By tapping into IBM Watson's cognitive intelligence, Fluid is infusing the personalized, interactive feel of an in-store conversation into every digital shopping interaction," said Mike Rhodin, Senior Vice President, IBM Watson Group. "This is what positive market disruption looks like, and it's a key example of how a new era of cognitive applications will revolutionize how decisions are made by consumers and businesses alike."

With a vision to forever transform the online and mobile commerce space, IBM and Fluid aim to bring back the era of personalized customer service, by accelerating the consumer shopping experience into a new era of cognitive computing.

"Fluid and IBM are purposely involving consumers in this new era of computing. An era in which people no longer type best-guess keywords into a retail website's search box and hope for meaningful results; instead people ask specific questions based on explicit needs and get expert, personalized, information-driven responses to guide buying decisions. This is the same experience we have in real-world stores with great sales reps every day and is what's missing from digital retail," said Kent Deverell, CEO, Fluid, Inc.

Fluid was one of the first organizations to join IBM's ecosystem of developers, entrepreneurs and growth companies of all sizes that are building apps and services infused with Watson's cognitive computing intelligence. As a Watson Ecosystem partner, Fluid is creating its cognitive technology in the Watson Developer Cloud, which provides a toolkit and sandbox for building cognitive apps, as well as access to Watson's Application Programming Interface (API).

Pioneering a New Era of Computing and Spurring Innovation

IBM Watson represents a new era of computing, in which apps and systems interact with human users more naturally, augment our knowledge with Big Data insights, and learn to improve how they assist us.

Fueled by innovation from a mission to transform industries and professions, Watson is uniquely positioned at the forefront of the new era of computing, evidenced by an unmatched demonstration of what cognitive systems can bring to transform decision-making. IBM is delivering a range of cloud-based products and services to clients in industries such as banking, healthcare, insurance and retail.

In January, 2014, IBM launched the IBM Watson Group, a new business unit dedicated to the development and commercialization of cloud-delivered cognitive advisors. The move signifies a strategic shift by IBM to accelerate into the marketplace a new class of software, services and apps that think, improve by learning, and discover insights from massive amounts of Big Data.

IBM is investing more than $1 billion into the Watson Group, focusing on research, development and bringing cloud-delivered cognitive applications and services to market. This includes $100 million earmarked for direct investment to support IBM's ecosystem of start-ups and businesses building cognitive apps made with Watson. Currently more than 1,900 organizations and entrepreneurial individuals have shared their ideas for creating cognitive apps that redefine how businesses and consumers make decisions.

About IBM

For more information on IBM Watson, please visit www.ibmwatson.com

To join the social discussion about Watson include the hashtag #ibmwatson

Follow Watson on Facebook: www.facebook.com/ibmwatson

For more insights on this story, please read this post on IBM's A Smarter Planet blog.

To watch a video about today's news, please click here.

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20090416/IBMLOGO

John Natale
IBM Media Relations
617-875-3658
[email protected]

Leigh Cashman
Fluid, Inc. Media Relations
(212) 475-6301
[email protected]

SOURCE IBM

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@BigDataExpo Stories
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
An IoT product’s log files speak volumes about what’s happening with your products in the field, pinpointing current and potential issues, and enabling you to predict failures and save millions of dollars in inventory. But until recently, no one knew how to listen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dan Gettens, Chief Research Officer at OnProcess, discussed recent research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and OnProcess Technology, where MIT created a new, breakthrough analytics model for ...
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effici...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
"MathFreeOn.com is a line coding platform for engineers and scientists. When they want to solve an engineering problem and they have to use software - they have to pay a lot of money for licenses - but with MathFreeOn you don't have to pay a lot of money. Just go to our site and write the code and you can check the result right away," explained Simon Lee, CMO of MathFreeOn, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Cla...
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
In his session at Cloud Expo, Robert Cohen, an economist and senior fellow at the Economic Strategy Institute, provideed economic scenarios that describe how the rapid adoption of software-defined everything including cloud services, SDDC and open networking will change GDP, industry growth, productivity and jobs. This session also included a drill down for several industries such as finance, social media, cloud service providers and pharmaceuticals.
"Dice has been around for the last 20 years. We have been helping tech professionals find new jobs and career opportunities," explained Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Extracting business value from Internet of Things (IoT) data doesn’t happen overnight. There are several requirements that must be satisfied, including IoT device enablement, data analysis, real-time detection of complex events and automated orchestration of actions. Unfortunately, too many companies fall short in achieving their business goals by implementing incomplete solutions or not focusing on tangible use cases. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products...
Infrastructure is widely available, but who’s managing inbound/outbound traffic? Data is created, stored, and managed online – who is protecting it and how? In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Jaeson Yoo, SVP of Business Development at Penta Security Systems Inc., discussed how to keep any and all infrastructure clean, safe, and efficient by monitoring and filtering all malicious HTTP/HTTPS traffic at the OSI Layer 7. Stop attacks and web intruders before they can enter your network.
The many IoT deployments around the world are busy integrating smart devices and sensors into their enterprise IT infrastructures. Yet all of this technology – and there are an amazing number of choices – is of no use without the software to gather, communicate, and analyze the new data flows. Without software, there is no IT. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation; Alan Williamson, Principal...
Businesses and business units of all sizes can benefit from cloud computing, but many don't want the cost, performance and security concerns of public cloud nor the complexity of building their own private clouds. Today, some cloud vendors are using artificial intelligence (AI) to simplify cloud deployment and management. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ajay Gulati, Co-founder and CEO of ZeroStack, will discuss how AI can simplify cloud operations. He will cover the following topics: why clou...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
"We analyze the video streaming experience. We are gathering the user behavior in real time from the user devices and we analyze how users experience the video streaming," explained Eric Kim, Founder and CEO at Streamlyzer, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry’s single source for the cloud. Fusion’s advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including clou...
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...