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Microsoft Is Betting Big on Artificial Intelligence

- By Naman Shukla

Microsoft (MSFT) ended 2016 in the green, up more than 10%. Moreover, the stock is off to a good start this year, with a 5% rise year to date. As a matter of fact, the company's upward movement started in early 2013. Since then, it has continued rewarding investors every year.

Microsoft reported second-quarter results in January. The company detailed earnings per share of 83 cents, exceeding analysts' estimate by 4 cents. The company's revenue came in at $26 billion, again exceeding analysts' estimate by $790 million. Moreover, that represents growth 4% compared to a 3% decilne in the same quarter of the previous fiscal year.

According to a report from marketsandmarkets.com, the artificial intelligence market is projected to reach $16.06 billion by 2022, a compound annual growth rate of approximately 63%. Keeping in mind the positive outlook, the company is making several smart moves to gain huge benefits from this trend.

Recently, the tech giant acquired Maluuba, a Canadian startup focused on natural language processing technology. As per the latest report from Synergy Research Group, Amazon (AMZN) holds the leading position in the public cloud market with approximately 40% worldwide revenue market share, significantly greater than Microsoft (MSFT), IBM (IBM) and Google (GOOGL) combined.

In 2016, Amazon Web Services market share remains at approximately 40% -- the same as in 2015. In comparison, Microsoft's cloud platform displayed huge signs of positive growth and is projected to grow at an even stronger rate in the coming years. Maluuba's co-founders mentioned the abilities of Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure as a crucial way to spread the artificial intelligence wealth.

Moreover, throughout the past few years, the company also acquired VoloMetrix, Aorato and Genee to fortify its presence in the artificial intelligence market.

Microsoft also recently publicized the launch of the Connected Vehicle Platform grounded on Azure in an effort to gain a healthy portion of the continuously growing connected cars market. Microsoft's latest platform is designed to focus on several key features such as enhanced in-car productivity, customer visions, predictive maintenance, advanced navigation and building autonomous driving capabilities.

As a matter of fact, the company's latest platform will use artificial intelligence based on data provided by drivers as well as vehicles in real time. Following the launch, Microsoft also signed a patent licensing deal with Toyota which includes access to entertainment and navigation, as well as voice recognition features that the company has developed.


Throughout the past few years, Microsoft has been performing amazingly well. Furthermore, its cloud platform looks well-poised to grow at a rapid pace in the years ahead. In the prior quarter, the revenue generated from Azure surged 95%.

With time, Microsoft appears set to to swiftly expand its portfolio of data and artificial intelligence abilities in Azure. The company has also made a smart move by launching Connected Vehicle Platform, as it will further strengthen its Azure platform.

Currently, Microsoft sits at a second position in the cloud market, and it is highly likely that its market share will continue surging in the years ahead.

This article first appeared on GuruFocus.