Statistics: Business use of AI tech is on the rise

Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Artificial Intelligence (AI). Source: A Health Blog/Creative Commons/ (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) by Estonian business has been growing, state agency Statistics Estonia says.

The survey, titled "Information technology in enterprises," finds also that the use of data analytics is also growing.

Tiina Pärson, leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, said: "The most frequently used AI technologies are text mining, machine learning (deep learning), and image recognition."

The use of ChatGPT, the AI-powered chatbot which gained in popularity in the past year was not covered by the current survey as the questionnaire was finalized ahead of the launch of that application, Pärson added.

As of the first quarter of 2023 (Q1 2023), 5 percent of enterprises have used at least one AI technology, 2 percentage points higher than in 2021 when the use of AI was first surveyed by Statistics Estonia in this way.

The use of AI is more common among large enterprises, with more than a fifth of them have using such tech, Statistics Estonia says.

Enterprises using AI tech in Estonia. Source: Statistics Estonia

Q1 2023 AI survey quick facts (source: Statistics Estonia)

  • By economic activity, use of AI technologies is the highest among enterprises engaged in financial and insurance activities (28 percent of the total), ICT (at 21 percent), and energy (14 percent).
  • AI tech is used by 3 percent of manufacturing enterprises, rising to 12 percent among electronics firms.
  • Companies usually by ready-to-use commercial software (3.2 percent of all firms), by purchasing and modifying commercial software to suit the enterprise's needs (2.8 percent of the total), or by using open-source software or systems modified by the enterprise's employees (1.6 percent). Close to 2 percent percent of companies surveyed used self-developed AI.
  • As for use, AI is primarily used in marketing or sales, cyber security, business administration procedures, production workflow improvement, accounting, auditing and finance management, and in R&D or innovation activities.
  • Over half (58 percent) of businesses surveyed said they purchase cloud computing services, primarily email services.
  • The use of backup services, too, has risen, to 44 percent of firms polled, compared with 37 percent in 2021.
  • Cyber security cloud services have also risen in popularity.
  • Data analytics was used by 19 percent of enterprises who have employees with the required qualifications, and by 10 percent of small enterprises (10–19 employees) and by 65 percent of larger enterprises.
  • This primarily concerned transactional data, customer data, such as the customer's purchase details, location, preferences, feedback and searches within the CRM system or the enterprise's website.
  • 12 percent of enterprises polled said they had purchased data analytics services from an external provider.
Enterprises using data analysis in Estonia. Source: Statistics Estonia

More detailed information from Statistics Estonia is available here and here.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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