Article by Jason Yu, director of Strategy & Innovation for Australia and New Zealand at AT&T
No longer just a sci-fi concept, artificial intelligence (AI) is already part of our data-driven world. Consider the intelligent personal assistant on your smartphone, the music or movie recommendations that introduce you to a new favourite, or your bank’s credit card fraud detection system: AI technology enhances our lives every day.
But despite the impressive growth of AI over the last few decades, the sector is still in its infancy. This is good news for Asia Pacific. With massive and rapidly urbanising populations, rising living standards and a generation of mobile-empowered tech savvy youth’s, our region is on track to drive the future of AI.
What could our AI future look like?
The first step toward advanced AI is smart automation and predictive analytics. This will help make drones, connected cars, connected appliances and robots an everyday reality. We see a future where you’ll be able to communicate with your home appliances to make shopping requests to prepare a meal, where your self-driving car will take itself for repairs without you lifting a finger, and where AI will improve our lives at home, school and work.
Making AI accessible
More broadly, AI is expected to impact product development and innovation across all industries. This starts with making AI more accessible to entrepreneurs and businesses.
AT&T has been building AI and machine learning systems for decades, using algorithms to automate operations such as common call center procedures, and to analyse and correct network outages. We’re now using AI to help make our global network more secure, self-healing and self-resilient. AI is also vital to improving traffic flow as we evolve toward 5G and manage the rapid growth of video traffic on mobile networks. And as the adoption of the Internet of Things continue to rapidly scale up, generating large volumes of data, AI will form a key building block to enable organisations to quickly analyse, gather insights and make dynamic decisions.
At the same time, we’re working on tools that will make the development of machine learning and AI systems as easy as creating a website. Our aim is to make it simple for people without programming experience to develop AI apps.
For example, we recently announced that we’re collaborating with Tech Mahindra to build an open source AI platform, Acumos, hosted by The Linux Foundation. The Acumos platform will make it easy to build, share and deploy AI applications by providing a marketplace for accessing, using and enhancing those applications. Our goal is to continue to research and create intelligent systems that can adapt, learn and mature over time.
While AI is already a part of our lives now, the future possibilities are endless. The power of machine learning and AI, allied with the incredible volumes of data generated on our networks today, and the power of human imagination, will enable Asian innovators to create new solutions to the world’s challenges.