US firms really dominate the higher echelons of the MIT Technology Review’s 50 Smartest Companies ranking. The top five are all based stateside, with China’s iFlytek the first overseas outfit to feature in the top 10 in sixth spot.
Who is iFlytek? Its voice assistant tech is the ‘Siri of China’, boasting a 70% Chinese market share in voice-based technologies. According to the MIT Technology Review, its real-time portable translator ‘puts AI to remarkable use’, able to overcome dialect, slang, and background noise to translate between Chinese and a dozen other languages with great accuracy.
The company has rolled out solutions for cars, TVs, and home appliances via voice and has set up a joint venture to develop educational products incorporating its instant translation features. It says over 160,000 developers use its software and more than 400 million people use its products.
A recent Barron’s report states that artificial intelligence has been touted as the greatest thing since e-commerce for the tech sector, adding that iFlytek is seen as ‘a promising contender for winning in the AI game’.