The AI trends of 2021

‘Artificial intelligence’ umbrellas a host of different technologies, births a range of discussions, and sparks a plethora of dreams for the future.

In the same vein, then, AI encompasses a collection of trends set to surface in 2021.

Here, we look ahead to the near future of artificial intelligence. What are the most likely AI trends of 2021?


Hyperautomation is the combining of robotic process automation with artificial intelligence technologies. It’s frequently mentioned as a core aspect of the next wave of digital transformation, and it’s one of the coming AI trends of 2021.

The power and utility of automation have long been known. The COVID-19 pandemic has only gone to showcase it further, as automation has proved instrumental in smoothing the disruption to office workflows.

As an extension of automation, then, it makes sense that hyperautomation will grow even more into the spotlight.

Welcoming the artificial intelligence of things (AIoT)

The artificial intelligence of things (AIoT) is the combination of the internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence. In other words, one of the 2021 AI trends will see the rise in our smart tech getting smarter.

With AIoT, internet-connected devices will be able to learn from the data they collect. Or understand your speech without shipping the data off to the cloud.

For instance, smart office technology will be able to not only detect who is in the office but make decisions about lighting and heating in order to save energy. Or, for a domestic example, an AIoT fridge will be able to scan its contents and suggest recipes using the food stored inside.

Increased use of cybersecurity AI

An increasingly tech-fuelled world needs increasingly sophisticated cybersecurity to keep it safe.

As such, the use of AI-powered cybersecurity tools stands to be one of the growing AI trends of 2021.

Artificial intelligence will power up cybersecurity by assisting with the detection and prevention of threats. For instance, by identifying patterns and learning to spot fraud. Or preventing unauthorized access and cyber-attacks by learning to identify unusual or threatening activity.

AI-enabled chips

Artificial intelligence functions need more processing power than non-AI functions. (AI tends to involve processing a lot more data.) This comes hand in hand with the ongoing exponential growth of processing power.

And this continued growth and accessibility of AI-computing creates heightened demand for more powerful hardware. As such, the creation and supply of AI-enabled chips is set to be another of the leading AI trends in 2021.

This hardware will be more efficient and enable increasingly widespread use of AI and automation functions.

Ethics, ethics, ethics

AI and ethical discussions come hand in hand, and this isn’t set to change in 2021. As AI continues to grow in capability and availability, its ethical implications continue to demand our attention.

For example, it’s likely that the ethics around deepfakes, AI for children, algorithmic bias, data protection and acceptable uses will all be up for heated discussion in 2021.

While AI is already part of daily life for many, there still isn’t a universal agreement over acceptable uses. Indeed 2021 looks to be another formative year for the future of artificially intelligent programs.

AI trends 2021

Artificial intelligence has been a buzzword for a while. But it’s still only finding its feet in our daily tech use.

The AI trends for 2021 all reflect the continued introduction of AI — and its emergence into life as we know it.

Are there any other AI trends you expect to see in 2021? Tweet us and let us know.

Useful links

Are AI ethics impossible?

AI for children: the risks and the rights

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