AI is already a huge part of the technology landscape and leading to many opportunities in mobile. Samsung is putting it to use in its Bixby voice assistant and upcoming smart speaker, Google has used it to help turn a person’s scribbles into clip art, while Huawei’s Richard Yu sees it as an avenue through which the company can overtake Apple,

These are somewhat crude examples of the real implications of AI technology, but it’s already clear that it’s going to play a big role in the future of tech at large. According to a recent report from Russian news site RT, Russian president Vladimir Putin says it could even lead to global domination.

In a recent talk with Russian students via a satellite link, Putin said: “Artificial intelligence is the future, not only for Russia, but for all humankind. It comes with colossal opportunities, but also threats that are difficult to predict. Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.”

While it would be nice to think that consumer tech manufacturers are going to lead this charge, transforming the nation through the sale of must-have, AI-powered gadgets, Putin’s claims probably relate to AI’s implications for military — automated weapons and the like.

Tesla CEO and SpaceX founder Elon Musk weighed in on the subject on Twitter stating that he believes the competition for AI superiority itself could be the cause of the next world war. In a tweet from only a week ago, Musk also said that AI would be “the best and worst thing ever for humanity.”

AI is a subject particularly close to Musk as he is the co-founder of OpenAI, a nonprofit research company that aims to collaborate with other businesses to ensure the development of safe AI; Microsoft and Amazon are among its partners. Musk also pledged $10 million to The Future of Life Institue in 2015 towards research in a similar area.

If you think all of this sounds scary, don’t worry, you can always make yourself feel better by asking Google Assistant to tell you a joke.

Scott Adam Gordon
Scott Adam Gordon is a European correspondent for Android Authority. Follow him on Twitter and Google+ at the links.