Amazon’s Generative AI Will Help Streamline Product Reviews

Amazon is rolling out systematic artificial intelligence summaries of customer product reviews for mobile users. The retail giant says it will be using generative AI to condense highlights of consumer comments so buyers won’t have to wade through dozens of individual reviews to grasp recurring sentiments. Short, AI-generated paragraphs will begin appearing on the product detail page, highlighting prevalent opinions. Along with the summary, Amazon will also include clickable buttons that highlight key product attributes, such as “ease of use,” “wearability” or “performance,” linking the references to reviews that discuss those aspects in detail.

“The new AI-powered features will initially be rolled out to a subset of U.S. shoppers on mobile devices across a ‘broad selection’ of products,” TechCrunch reports, noting that the company will be using the initial results “to learn and fine-tune its AI models to improve their effectiveness.”

Amazon is also planning to expand the highlights feature with additional categories as the AI reviews reach a broader global consumer base.

Amazon’s customer reviews were added to product listings in 1995, the year the service launched. At the time, the concept was considered “radical,” Amazon says in an announcement, perhaps anticipating the same criticism about adding generative AI to the mix.

Customer reviews have always been a popular feature with shoppers, Amazon says, noting it has added billions of the user-generated ratings since launch. “Last year alone, 125 million customers contributed nearly 1.5 billion reviews and ratings to Amazon stores — that’s 45 reviews every second, making reviews at Amazon an incredible resource for customers.”

The AI summaries, according to Amazon, will “make it even easier for customers to understand the common themes across reviews,” succinctly showcasing what others are saying about a product. “With the recent advancements in generative AI, we believe we have the technical means to address this long-standing customer need,” Amazon says.

“AI has become a controversial tool,” writes PCWorld, adding that “as a business tool, however, it’s received a warmer reception.” Microsoft recently added AI assists for customers, with Windows Copilot and Bing Chat able to perform various functions, including summarizing emails and meeting notes.

And “Windows 11 Insider preview testers have had access to a helpful new feature in the Microsoft Store app: generative AI-based summaries of the latest user reviews of individual apps,” PCWorld explains, noting that Newegg this month began including AI-generated review summaries on its e-retail website for tech products, calling them “Review Bytes.”

News of Amazon testing AI to generate review summaries as well as to flag fake reviews was reported earlier this summer.

Amazon’s Overcomplicated New Product Star Ratings Are No Bright Idea, Android Police, 8/16/23

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