“Very few respondents reported funding amounts of less than $250,000 for AI technologies, indicating that AI development is cost-intensive compared to other technology innovations. This is not an easy segment to enter due to the complexity of building and training AI models,” said Rasit.
Barriers to AI Adoption and Integration Remain
The survey also highlights the relative immaturity of AI technologies compared to the other innovation areas. Just over half of respondents report significant target customer adoption of their AI-enabled products and services. Forty-one percent of respondents cited AI emerging technologies as still being in development or early adoption stages, meaning there is a wave of potential adoption as new or augmented AI products and services enter general availability.
Technology immaturity is cited as a top reason among AI-investing organizations leading to failure when integrating an emerging technology. Furthermore, product leaders investing in AI whose implementations are progressing slower than expected reported product complexity and a lack of skills as the main hindrances to their progress.
“These survey responses reflect the difficult cycle of developing AI technology, given its complexity, as well as industrywide challenges in hiring AI talent due to the finite number of skilled individuals,” said Rasit.
*For Editors: The 2021 Gartner Second Annual Emerging Technology Product Leaders Survey was conducted online from April through June 2021 among 268 respondents from China, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Singapore, the U.K. and the U.S. Respondents were required to be involved in their organizations’ portfolio decisions when it comes to emerging technology, working at an organization in the high-tech industry with enterprisewide revenue for fiscal year 2020 of $10 million or more.
Gartner clients can read more in the report “Emerging Technologies: AI Technology Spending in 2021 — Survey Trends.” Learn which emerging technologies can help generate ROI in the Gartner Emerging Technologies Roadmap. Learn how to track and plan for digital disruptions in the complimentary Gartner webinar “7 Digital Disruptions You Might Not See Coming in 2020-2025.”
Additional analysis on emerging technology trends, including AI, will be presented during Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo 2021, the world's most important conferences for CIOs and other IT executives. Follow news and updates from the conferences on Twitter using #GartnerSYM.
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