dtac’s AI Lab opens the door to improved services

Tech August 18, 2018 11:23

By The Nation weekend

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dtac has opened an artificial intelligence laboratory (AI) in partnership with Thammasat University's Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology (SIIT) in an effort to explore what the telecommunications company calls the future of customer-centric services.

Located at Thammasat University's Rangsit campus, north of Bangkok, the dtac SIIT AI Lab will connect data science students and leading professors with real-world business cases provided by dtac. The partnership supports both dtac's AI strategy and its ambition to train a new generation of digital talent for Thailand.

Ukrit Salyapongs, head of channel strategy and performance management division at dtac, said that dtac's collaboration with SIIT is a strategic decision to collaborate with top-notch academics to apply new technology to tomorrow's business challenges. The collaboration is expected to aid dtac in automating its business operation process and support highly advanced customer personalisation. 

 “Artificial intelligence will deeply transform business. It's important that students not only learn how machine learning works, but also how it interfaces with real-world business challenges. With dtac's support, the AI Lab will have access to some of the most advanced data available in Thailand,” said Ukrit. The company has invested Bt12 million in the lab over two years, and it also provides anonymised data and real business challenges to facilitate students in their work on developing applicable solutions. The AI Lab will initially focus on time-consuming processes best left to machines. For example, dtac and SIIT are already collaborating on an ID verification system that would increase safety while speeding up the process of SIM registration verification.

"We can simplify the customer experience and make it easier and more personalised by using artificial intelligence. In the future, AI will allow customers walking into our shops to receive recommendations based on their usage without having to explain how they currently use their smartphones,” said Ukrit.

To prepare for in-store AI usage, dtac is revamping its stores to introduce touchscreen interfaces and salespersons equipped with mobile devices, a series of foundational changes to make the dtac customer experience smoother. 

With artificial intelligence, dtac will move further towards "invisible interfaces," where facial recognition and voice-operated devices allow services to be delivered with the least possible friction.