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Tech giants introduce the general public to AI


A world first. American giant Meta is launching an introductory course to artificial intelligence in France. Run in partnership with the Simplon School, it aims to give 30,000 people a basic understanding of AI. Here are some insights from the experts at AURIS Finance, a consultancy specialising in mergers and acquisitions.

AI is here to stay. Following the introduction of generative artificial intelligence in 2023, all companies are now working on AI tools and the first use cases are being rolled out. The general public, on the other hand, is not on an equal footing when it comes to using AI. While the most enthusiastic are already manipulating the tool, other segments of the population remain far removed from this technological revolution. This is the case, for example, with job seekers, whom Meta (parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp) is targeting in partnership with France Travail (formerly Pôle emploi).  The initiative, called “AI Initiation Workshops”, is free, open to all and requires no skills or qualifications. This half-day training course will be held online in real time to allow interaction with students, and in eight French cities: Marseille, Lyon, Paris, Lille, Nantes, Rennes, Montpellier and Bordeaux.

Big tech storms the Old Continent

In order to set up these workshops, the American giant Meta has entered into a partnership with the French training centre Simplon. The training will consist of three parts: a theoretical explanation of generative AI and existing tools, an introduction to the various models, and an awareness of the limitations and biases introduced by the technology. However, the group did not say how much it was investing. For its part, Google has pledged €25 million to help Europeans develop their artificial intelligence skills. The programme, called the “AI Opportunity Initiative for Europe”, aims to “provide training and skills to help people successfully seize the opportunities of AI”.

A major challenge for the future of Big Tech

This is not the first foray into Europe for the Mountain View company. Back in 2015, Google pledged to offer free training courses to bridge the digital skills gap as part of its ‘Grow with Google’ initiative. The American company claims to have already trained more than 12 million people in Europe. Meta and Google programmes are aimed primarily at those furthest from the digital world, through “social ventures and non-profits that can help us reach the people most likely to benefit from this training”. For Big Tech as a whole, growing public awareness of AI is critical. It will allow them to reach out to users and offer them new products.

Our experts at your side

The development of generative AI is creating new needs. The training sector is likely to be in particular demand to meet the expectations of Big Tech, but also of all companies looking to upgrade their skills. In the coming months, strategic alliances between players in the professional training sector are likely to emerge. At AURIS Finance, our experts are specialised by sector. Whether you are looking for a buyer or a new target, we are at your side.

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