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25 Nov 2019

Artificial Intelligence is the Top Technology for Startups #hubberlin

  • Every third startup uses AI, just as many think about its use
  • Great interest in data analysis and blockchain technology

Artificial intelligence is the most important new technology for German startups. More than every third startup (39 percent) already uses AI - and the number could even double in the near future. Another third of the startups (38 percent) state that they are planning or discussing the use of AI. Only for about every fifth startup (22 percent) AI is currently not an issue at all. This is the result of a survey of more than 300 startups commissioned by the digital association Bitkom. For comparison: In a Bitkom survey conducted in the spring, only 2 percent of companies with 20 employees or more said that they use AI and only 9 percent that they were discussing it. The overwhelming majority (86 percent), on the other hand, does not consider AI to be an issue in their own company. "If we want to make artificial intelligence a success story in Germany, then we need the innovative strength of the start-ups. Especially when using AI technologies in established industries, start-ups are ideal cooperation partners for medium-sized companies and corporate groups," says Bitkom President Achim Berg. "We have to significantly expand research and development around AI but also to established companies. Above all, we must succeed in rapidly massively expanding AI training at universities and research institutes in order to have the necessary specialists".

Currently, only cloud computing (65 percent), data analysis and big data (48 percent) are used more frequently than AI in start-ups. Internet of Things ranks fourth (25 percent). 3D printing (9 percent), virtual and augmented reality (8 percent) and blockchain technology (8 percent) follow at a clear distance. Robotics (4 per cent), 5G (3 per cent) and drones (3 per cent) are lagging behind.

Increased use of data analysis and blockchain planned

However, the use of technology in German start-ups could change fundamentally in the near future. While AI represents the technology whose use is most frequently planned or discussed, it is closely followed by data analysis and big data (32 percent) as well as blockchain (26 percent), 5G (23 percent) and the Internet of Things (22 percent). "Startups have a good feel for promising future technologies," says Berg. "With blockchain technology, practical applications are still scarce, but it has the potential to fundamentally change entire industries. And the new 5G mobile communications standard will enable innovative online applications in many areas, from networked production to autonomous driving." Around every fifth start-up (18 percent) is also considering the use of virtual and augmented reality, and every eighth (13 percent) is considering cloud computing. They are followed by robotics (9 percent), drones (7 percent) and 3D printing (7 percent).