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Small Business Tech Roundup: Intuit Introduces An AI Assistant

By September 10, 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 – Introducing Intuit Assist: The generative AI-powered financial assistant for small businesses and consumers.

Intuit – parent company of QuickBooks and TurboTax – has announced “Intuit Assist”, an AI-powered financial assistant. Programmed to “fuel financial success” individuals and small businesses will now reap the benefits of Intuit Assist’s ability to deliver astute, concrete answers to their financial questions. (Source: Business Wire)

Why this is important for your business:

wrote recently about the problem I see with Intuit’s AI strategy in that – while generally good – the strategy doesn’t immediately address certain specific problems that its small business customers need solved. This assistant is definitely a good first step towards addressing these problems. There’s still a lot of work to go but I’m confident in the next few years my QuickBooks clients will be getting better and more accurate information to help them run their business thanks to AI.

2 – Zoom introduces a feature called “Notes” for real-time text editing during virtual meetings.

Technology service provider Zoom has added a new tool to its stock. “Notes” allows users to create and edit documents during meetings, eliminating the task of alternating between other writing/editing software. (Source: IT Voice)

Why this is important for your business:

I give credit to the people at Zoom. They realize it’s a competitive market for online meetings and they’re working hard to stay competitive. I’m a customer and like the new stuff. As stated on its website, Notes is a “new workspace to create and collaborate before, during, and after meetings,” allowing users to also work separately outside of meetings and share that content later. Likewise, during meetings users can initiate the share function for group additions/edits. Similar to other programs, Notes will include formatting options and the ability to add graphics.

3 – Google Chat now plays nice with Slack and Microsoft Teams.

Among recent news and announcements from Google is Google Chat’s compatibility with Slack – an instant messaging service – and Microsoft Teams. Details around this include ongoing collaboration between Google and IT company Mio to achieve synchronization between platforms. Google reps conveyed the importance of interoperability between various chat platforms to avoid glitches that can result in lost messages or time-consuming monitoring of multiple platforms. (Source: Engadget)

Why this is important for your business:

This is good news for customers that are using Slack, Teams and Google Workspace and I’m always happy to see big tech platforms play nice with each other. I’m not sure why I would want to integrate my Workspace with Slack or Teams, given that I’m getting the features I need from it, but perhaps your business is missing some functionality that can be solved by this integration.

4 – WhatsApp’s new Mac app offers 8-person video calls. Here’s what else it can do.

Maria Diaz of ZDNet reported on an exciting update for WhatsApp users. The instant messaging platform has announced the new Mac app is now available that supports group calls – 32 people max – and video calls up to 8 people. (Source: ZDNet)

Why this is important for your business:

According to the report the Mac app offers the same functionality as WhatsApp on the iPhone – people can join calls in process, receive notifications and access call history. WhatsApp appears to be heading into Zoom territory now that the app has been transferred to both Windows and Mac. As Diaz reports, “WhatsApp appears to be targeting more professionals.” WhatsApp for Mac is available on the website and will soon be in stores.

5 – The 9 best AI video generators (text-to-video).

For novices of the video editing world – AI video generators are now available to create professional-quality content. Lando Loic reported on 9 AI video creation tools that are out there, such as: GliaCloud – an AI video editing tool that can produce engaging visuals from text content, in minutes. (Source: Make Use Of)

Why this is important for your business:

Don’t get too excited about this stuff. While it’s intriguing to type something into your device and then have some AI app immediately create a video from it, the technology is still very much in its early stages. I’m not sure I would use this output in a professional setting. That said, the future looks exciting for these products – and scary too.

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