Machine customers represent one of the biggest new growth opportunities of the decade, and business leaders must act now to create a path to entry to a business megatrend that will eventually be more significant than the arrival of digital commerce, according to Gartner, Inc.
A machine customer is a non-human economic actor who obtains goods and/or services in exchange for payment.
In the new Gartner book, When Machines Become Customers, authors Don Scheibenreif, distinguished VP analyst at Gartner and leader of Gartner’s research on customer experience, and Mark Raskino, distinguished VP analyst, Gartner Fellow and leader of Gartner’s CEO research, explain that machine customers will be involved in a wide range of consumer and business purchases. In the book, they anticipate and unpack key challenges and opportunities for organizations, and how these organizations should tackle them.
“The machine customer era has already begun,” said Scheibenreif. “There are more machines with the potential to act as buyers than humans on the planet. Today, there are more than 9.7 billion installed IoT devices, including equipment monitoring, surveillance cameras, connected cars, smart lighting, tablets, smartwatches, smart speaker and connected printers. Each of these has a steadily improving ability to analyze information and make decisions. Every IoT enabled product could become a customer. In fact, Gartner predicts that by 2027 50% of people in advanced economies will have AI personal assistants working for them every day.”