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The United Kingdom government released its 10-year plan to make them the global "artificial intelligence superpower." They are gearing up to go head to head with other countries like China and the United States.

U.K. to Boost A.I.

The announcement was made on Sept. 22, and the government named the project the "National Artificial Intelligence Strategy." It is built to boost the use of artificial intelligence or A.I. among U.K. businesses, develop local tech talent, and attract international investment into its A.I. companies.

Chris Philip, the minister of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport, said that they want to lay the foundation for the next ten years' growth with a strategy that will help them seize the potential of A.I. They also expressed their desire to lead the world in shaping how A.I.'s are governed.

The project includes several reports, programs, and initiatives, according to CNBC.

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One of the programs is called the National A.I. Research and Innovation, and it will be launched as part of the country's effort to improve collaboration between their researchers.

Another program is set to support A.I. development outside Southeast England and London, where the majority of the U.K.'s A.I. efforts are concentrated.

The U.K. government said it will invest more in industries that are not using A.I. yet, like farming and energy.

The availability and the capacity of U.K. researchers and organizations' computing power will also be reviewed.

Also, a consultation on copyrights and patents for A.I. will be assessed to ensure that the country is capitalizing on ideas.

The country has been slowly rolling out AI-powered systems in London. In 2019, the U.K. launched the world's first AI-powered bar that uses facial recognition to serve customers.

U.S. and China

From 1998 to 2017, the United States filed more A.I. patent applications than any other country in the world. According to the World Intellectual Property Organization, the country submitted around 50,000 applications.

The next country that has filed thousands of A.I. patent applications is China--with 41,000 submissions.

Meanwhile, the U.K. only filed 2,000 AI patents.

In March, Eric Schmidt, the former CEO of Google, stated that China could replace the U.S. as the world's A.I. superpower, and there will be military implications if that happens.

In August, the U.S. military revealed they are exploring the possibility of using A.I. to identify future events.

Schmidt, together with a group of experts in a National Security Commission on A.I., added that the U.S. is not prepared to defend or compete in A.I.

Taking Over Start-Ups

The launch of the U.K.'s A.I. project comes after the country's government allowed tech giants from overseas to take over some of the country's innovative companies.

DeepMind, a firm in London focused on A.I. research and is one of the leading A.I. labs, was sold to Google back in 2014 for $600 million.

Magic Pony Technologies, another A.I. lab, was sold to Twitter, VocallQ, an A.I. research company, was sold to Apple, and Evi Technologies, an A.I. research firm, was sold to Amazon.

SoftBank, Japan's chip company that powers a lot of A.I. applications, was sold to Arm.

In 2019, the U.K. invested $3.5 billion or £2.5 billion to the country's A.I. start-ups, but a lot of them are now at risk of being sold to larger overseas rivals.

Big tech companies are acquiring the rights to smaller companies, according to the Financial Times. Massive tech companies have spent $264 billion on rivals worth less than $1 billion since the beginning of 2021.

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Written by Sophie Webster

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