AI now a 'top priority' for Microsoft

For Microsoft, artificial intelligence will be a top priority going forward. AI has thus elbowed mobile and cloud technologies out from the top spot. 

The news came as Microsoft released its annual report for its 2017 fiscal year, which ended on June 30.

The strongest change is noticed in its vision statement, which now says: "Our strategic vision is to compete and grow by building best-in-class platforms and productivity services for an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge infused with AI."

No mention of mobile, and the “mobile-first, cloud-first” mantra that CEO Satya Nadella favoured since taking office appears to now officially be gone.

The report mentions artificial intelligence six times, while the same report last year has had a total of zero mentions.

Microsoft has been fairly busy in the AI sector lately, acquiring a number of AI-based start-ups (Swiftkey, Maluuba) and forming a research and development team called AI and Research group. According to the report, the group "focuses on our AI development and other forward-looking research and development efforts spanning infrastructure, services, applications, and search.”

Microsoft is not the only one focusing on AI as of lately, but it is an important player nevertheless. Both Google and Facebook are already working hard on infusing AI into their products.

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