Have you ever been shopping on Amazon, but found yourself too lazy to read the user reviews at the bottom of a product listing? Well, you’re in luck because Amazon has recently implemented a generative AI to its platform that will summarize reviews.
The company states the AI tool will offer short paragraphs “on the product detail page” highlighting key features as well as overall “customer sentiment”. Customers can quickly scan the short block of text to get an idea of whether a product is good or not instead of having to read dozens of reviews. Amazon states in its announcement you can direct the AI a bit by having it focus on specific “attributes.” Say you want a smart TV that’s easy to use. Users can select the “Ease of use” tab to have the summarizer specifically talk about that attribute or something else like its performance is while streaming content.
Work in progress
Unfortunately, the AI feature was unavailable to us as we were excluded from the rollout, but The Verge had access. In their report, The Verge claims it saw the tool show up on listings for “TVs, headphones, tablets, [plus] fitness trackers.” It isn’t very consistent either. They state the summarizer is available on the Galaxy Tab A7, but not the Galaxy Tab A8. Also, it appears Amazon’s AI heavily favors writing positive content, as it spends “less time on the negatives.”
We reached out to Amazon with several questions about the new tool, including if there will there be a desktop version and if the company plans on providing links directing users to the AI's source reviews. Google’s SGE tool does this for the generated content it produces. It’d be nice to see sources in the paragraph. However, Amazon has nothing more to share at the moment.
Analysis: Remaining skeptical
Amazon has been dabbling in AI for a while now. Back in May, Amazon listed a job listing for a “machine learning focus engineer,” revealing the company is looking for someone to help develop an “interactive conversational experience” for its search engine. We could see the Amazon search bar one day offer a ChatGPT-like experience where you talk with the AI when looking for a product.
It would be wrong of us not to add a little asterisk to all this AI talk. As you may know, generative AIs are known to “hallucinate”, which is to say, they sometimes provide inaccurate information. It’s gotten to the point some experts believe this problem will never be fixed. So read the summarizer’s text with several grains of salt. As it turns out, you just can’t beat good old-fashioned human opinion – like the kind TechRadar provides every single day.
Labor Day is coming up and that means savings. Be sure to check out TechRadar’s guide for Amazon’s Labor Sale for 2023. Price cuts for certain electronics are already live.