Deloitte and IBM co-hosted an event showcasing to South African companies how cognitive computing is a rapidly evolving technology that holds the potential to reshape how work gets done, how businesses grow, and how markets and industries evolve.

The event was titled “Cognitive Analytics and the smartest machine on earth – experience the art of the possible with IBM Watson”, and the event was aimed at primarily analytics, risk and technology professionals.

It was looking at exploring the real opportunities for cognitive technologies in business, with specific focus on IBM Watson’s role in unlocking these opportunities.

Watson is a cognitive technology that processes information more like a human than a computer.

While many technology players are investing in developing cognitive computing or artificial intelligence (AI) solutions, IBM is the only company marketing a cognitive computing platform that’s specifically designed to support the development of a broad range of enterprise solutions.

“For this reason Deloitte has joined IBM in investing time, money, and people toward applying Watson technologies to help solve our client’s business problems,” says Werner Swanepoel, Director at Deloitte.

He said that AI technologies can be applied either to save cost or to add value. and there are already many examples of both kinds of outcomes in the marketplace.

Swanepoel explained that AI capabilities are rapidly improving and becoming more important all the time, but cautioned that companies that don’t start now to understand what these technologies are and how they are relevant to their business, risk being left behind.