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Small Business Tech Roundup: How A Small Business Uses ChatGPT As A Personal Assistant

By June 11, 2023July 11th, 2023No Comments

(This column originally appeared in Forbes)

Here are five things in tech that happened this week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 — Small business uses ChatGPT as a personal assistant.

DC News Now recently highlighted a story about a working mom of three — Alexandria Allison — who is using ChatGPT for her professional coaching business. Allison said she uses the AI primarily for social media marketing and added that it has provided her with enough content to engage with her followers for weeks. The end result has been fruitful as it has also drawn attention from new clients. (Source:

Why this is important for your business:

This was a fun story that shows, in real life, how one small business owner is leveraging ChatGPT to make her business better. I’ve listed 27 uses for the AI chatbot for a small business in this prior Forbes article. You can expect this list to grow exponentially in the coming years.

2 — Google offers new learning and consulting options to enterprises on their AI journey.

Frederic Lardinois of TechCrunch reported on Google Cloud Consulting — a new service that provides expertise and guidance on the uses of generative AI. Targeted at “C-Suite leaders at large enterprises” the service aims to give people informative suggestions on how to maximize AI while maintaining a judicious approach to how the technology is used. (Source: TechCrunch)

Why this is important for your business:

Although Google is making this available to larger enterprises, there are plenty of small and midsized companies that can take advantage. Aware of this transitional period professionals find themselves in, Google is fulfilling a need for people to get up to speed on generative AI to remain competitive. To that end, Lardinois mentioned Google’s plan to also offer “new generative AI consulting…that help its customers use AI to, for example, analyze data.”

3 — Apple Messages app update brings voicemail transcription, a ‘Check-In’ location-sharing feature and more.

Apple is making some major updates to its most-used feature on the iPhone. The Messages app is getting some impressive upgrades Sarah Perez of TechCrunch reported. (Source: TechCrunch)

Why this is important for your business:

All of these changes can help you and your employees work more productively. One of the new features is “Check-in” where iPhone owners can notify their friends and family (or co-wokers) they’ve safely arrived at their destination. The feature is also programmed to detect when a person is home or at another location and will send an auto-notification. Other features include viewing transcribed voice messages and a new “catch-up” feature will allow users to quickly highlight the first unread message in group chats.

4 — Meet your next coworker — Walmart’s Alphabot

Walmart is evolving with AI to the benefit of its employees. The megastore has enhanced the process of its fulfillment operations with the introduction of “ Alphabot” — a robotic assistant that will retrieve items from the fulfillment center to help expedite grocery orders. Walmart’s Senior VP of Operations Southeast Region — shared how Alphabot will create rather than cut job opportunities. “As capacity grows, the company will have to hire more personal shoppers and fill more leadership positions…” Berkeley is quoted as saying in regard to the new system. (Source: Fox Business)

Why this is important for your business:

Walmart is joining a growing list of retailers, distributors and manufacturers in deploying AI to help increase productivity in their warehouses. As the costs of these technologies drop we’ll be seeing many more smaller businesses doing the same.

5 — NASA selects small business, research teams for tech development.

This week NASA released a press release announcing the recipients of its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program. Notably eight Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) were included among NASA’s selection from 300 proposals. The press release also highlighted more than 25 percent of recipients are women-owned and veteran-owned entities (each proposal team receives $150,000). (Source: NASA)

Why this is important for your business:

The agency devoted to research and space exploration since 1958 is championing the small business sector by funding more than 200 small businesses that will research new technologies to “protect the health of astronauts” and other areas of research. “This program enables NASA to nurture pioneering ideas from a diversity of innovators across the country,” Gynelle Steele, the program’s deputy executive, said.

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