What is Watson AI by IBM – Explained

Here's everything you need to know about the revival of IBM's Watson AI

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Just over a decade ago, IBM’s Watson supercomputer showcased some of the potential of artificial intelligence following its success in beating the best human ‘Jeopardy!’ player in 2011. After Watson’s brief period in the spotlight, IBM decided not to venture back into the world of AI for many years – up until now. At its core, Watson is a data analytics processor that uses natural language processing. The Watson engine has been used to power a few different projects, with Watson X being the most recent, but IBM has a quickly growing portfolio of AI products. If you haven’t heard of it before, here’s everything you need to know about Watson AI created by IBM.

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What is Watson X?

IBM (International Business Machines Corporation) created WatsonX to utilize AI and automation to harness productivity in large-scale businesses. Using WatsonX, businesses will be able to efficiently train and deploy custom AI capabilities across their entire company, whilst remaining in full control of their data.

The platform of WatsonX consists of three powerful components:

  • WastonX.AI studio can be used for the creation of new foundation models, generative AI, and machine learning.
  • The WatsonX.data is a “fit-for-purpose” data store, with the performance of a data warehouse and the flexibility of a data lake. You can connect to your data in just minutes, and get trusted insight on data usage, storage, and safety.
  • Finally, the WatsonX.governance toolkit to help you monitor and manage AI usage across the company to mitigate both software and ethical risks. It enables AI workflows to be built on transparency and responsibility.

Essentially, WatsonX was built to optimize the outcomes of AI in your business while ensuring the safe and responsible use of data. It will streamline and automate basic tasks in a wide variety of areas from customer service, and coding, to the training of new AI models. In a large multinational organization, this could mean running hundreds, even thousands, of models at any time – this is a process that WatsonX could automate for you, saving companies hours of time. All-in-all, WatsonX is a Swiss-army-knife like tool that will help to smoothly integrate AI into your business using its many skills.

IBM is partnering with AI startup Hugging Face for the relaunch of Watson, and we know that so far, both NASA and Wix have signed on as potential clients. Although Watson currently remains in a closed beta test, it is now confirmed that WatsonX will officially launch on the 27th of July.

Is Watson AI a chatbot?

While Watson X is not a chatbot, you can find chatbot features when using a different facet of Watson AI, IBM Watson Assistant (formerly Watson Conversation). Watson Assistant is a customer service chatbot built on machine learning and natural language processing, while also leveraging large language models. It was created to complete user’s intended actions through conversational AI, with an intent detection algorithm that is now 79% accurate according to the IBM website. The deep learning models in the chatbot automatically adapt to your business domain, and will always refer the user to a human agent when necessary.

Final thoughts

WatsonX could be seen as another huge leap for the mainstreaming of artificial intelligence and machine-learning models into business use, and IBM research is ongoing as they attempt to rival big names in the AI market such as ChatGPT. If you’re interested in the use of the Watson suite for your business, you could consider joining the waitlist on the IBM website. However, if you want to find out more about the mainstreaming of AI, you could check out our rundown on the best AI tools of 2023, or even the best AI content generation tools to dip your toe in the water of artificial intelligence.