IBM Watson to bring cognitive computing to South Korean banking
IBM and SK Holdings C&C, a South Korean IT services company, are planning to bring IBM’s Watson cognitive technology language services to South Korean banking.
The alliance, which includes training Watson to understand Korean, is designed to “dramatically accelerate” the adoption of cognitive computing throughout the region, giving South Korea-based developers a set of localised APIs and services they can use to help create their own applications and build new businesses.
David Kenny, general manager, IBM Watson, says: “The South Korean marketplace is moving quickly to embrace the disruptive opportunities from next generation technology. Our strategic alliance with SK Holdings C&C will put cognitive services in the hands of more businesses and developers.”
SK Holdings C&C will run Watson and IBM Bluemix from its Pangyo Cloud Center, in support of universities, developers, and local businesses, across “diverse” industries including banking.
Watson’s conversational capabilities will “help improve the mobile device experience; and improve consumers’ call centre interactions”.
Both companies will also establish a multi-million dollar fund to support education- and developer-focused initiatives.
SK Holdings C&C will be IBM’s preferred distributor for cognitive solutions in South Korea, where the technology could be embedded into tablets, smartphones and smart devices, as well as robots. Korean language Watson services are expected to become available early next year.
With the addition of Korean, this means IBM will increase the system’s conversational languages to eight including: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Japanese and Arabic.
Earlier this year, IBM’s Watson achieved other deals around the world.
Marstone, a New York-based financial services firm, teamed up with IBM Watson for Wealth Management to offer digital advice assisted by cognitive computing.
While in Japan, Mizuho Bank plans to use a new robotics platform developed by IBM Research-Tokyo for the bank’s customer service-oriented robots. IBM says its researchers are developing new technologies that will “benefit” the platform by tapping into Watson.