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15-09-2017
創科創投基金

政府已於2017年9月15日推出「創科創投基金」。該計劃現正接受風險投資基金申請成為共同投資伙伴(截止日期:2018年1月15日)。簡介會將於2017年10月3日於香港科學園舉行,歡迎風險投資基金出席。

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21-02-2018
NEC and Tohoku University succeed in AI-based new material development

NEC Corporation and Tohoku University applied new technologies developed by NEC, which use AI to predict the characteristics of unknown materials, to the joint development of cutting edge thermoelectric conversion technology known as a thermoelectric (TE) device(1) using spin current(2), and achieved 100 times better thermoelectric conversion efficiency over the course of approximately a year. These new technologies consist of a group of AI technologies for material development which incorporate the various types of knowledge required for material development, and technology for the batch acquisition of the large amounts of material data that AI needs to learn material properties.  The AI technologies for material development use heterogeneous mixture learning technology(3) and a number of machine learning technologies specific to material development(4), (5) independently developed by NEC. These technologies were combined with technology for the batch acquisition of material data, which enabled the acquisition and evaluation of data regarding more than 1,000 types of materials with different compositions data and resulted in much more accurate AI learning. NEC and Tohoku University applied a development technique combining these technologies to the development of a spin-current thermoelectric conversion device, and demonstrated that it is possible to enhance thermoelectric conversion efficiency by designing an actual material in line with AI-derived new material design guidelines.  In the future, NEC and Tohoku University will develop more sophisticated AI-based technologies for predicting the physical properties of new materials and conduct further research and development aimed at the practical application of spin-current thermoelectric conversion device technology and the realization of IoT devices that continue working for years without a power supply.  In recent years, cases in which machine learning technologies and analysis technologies based on informatics are applied to large amounts of data to extract hidden information and predict future trends are becoming increasingly common in a wide range of fields.  In the realm of natural sciences, there has long been research into the use of informatics in the search for new substances and materials and, especially in the biomedical, pharmaceutical and chemical fields, advances in so-called combinatorial technologies(6), which involve acquiring data through comprehensive investigation of search objects, have resulted in the extensive use of informatics in projects such as the human genome project.  Similarly, in fields that deal with solid state materials such as metals, semiconductors and oxides, techniques that make full use of the advantages of machine learning and analysis technologies from the viewpoint of shortening the duration of research and development and reducing costs are attracting attention in recent years as materials informatics (MI). Harnessing knowledge gained over many years of basic research in the natural sciences field using informatics, NEC began conducting research into analysis technologies specifically for solid state materials data more than five years ago. However, it was challenging because it took time and effort to produce and evaluate data in this field, making it difficult to obtain enough groups of data of sufficient quality required for the application of MI.  The initiatives of NEC and Tohoku University have now resulted in NEC's independent development of AI technologies for material development that effectively analyze material data, and technology for the batch acquisition of data about many different types of solid state materials. NEC and Tohoku University have also applied a material development cycle incorporating these two types of technologies to the development of thermoelectric conversion materials using spin currents and considerably shortened the duration of material development. 1. Development of AI technologies for material development A material development cycle using MI handles an enormous amount of material data and it is, therefore, inevitable that the data processing and classification and the data evaluation that was previously painstakingly performed by specialist researchers can no longer keep up. Also, in the development process, the amount of material candidates is generally greater than the amount of data that can be obtained, and selection of the process for searching these candidates needs to be performed more efficiently than in the past. To address these issues, NEC developed the following AI technologies for material development which correspond to the various characteristics of actual material data.AI technology for combinatorial data analysis: Machine learning technology for processing and classifying large amounts of data acquired using combinatorial techniques at high speed. Knowledge of physics/materials science is partially incorporated into existing machine learning algorithms to realize high precision, high speed data processing(4). AI technology for physical property modeling: Machine learning technology for evaluating large amounts of material data. Inductive modeling of physical properties using heterogeneous mixture learning with high readability (white-box) and high precision prediction enables researchers and AI to increase their understanding of data in concert. This technology plays a very important part in the extraction of the material parameter candidates that characterize the physical properties model.(3) AI technology for materials screening: Machine learning technology for efficiently searching for the target material from among a large amount of materials candidates. On the selection (screening) of materials with reference to the material parameters that characterize the physical properties model, the technology performs high-speed searches of ultra-multi-dimensional systems, which was difficult with existing Bayesian Optimization(7). This is achieved through the application of branch-and-bound type algorithm that predict moves into the future based on Combinatorial Game Theory.(5)2. Establishment of combinatorial data acquisition platform (batch evaluation and acquisition of large amounts of data)  NEC and Tohoku University developed a combinatorial data acquisition platform that combines theoretical calculation data acquired through material property simulation with test data acquired through proprietary thin film materials preparation/characteristics evaluation technologies, to create enough data groups of sufficient quality. In one example of composition-spread materials shown in the photograph, thin film material with more than 1,000 different types of composition was produced on a single substrate in one film preparation process. Electrode pads, etc. according to the purpose of measurement are patterned on the evaluation sample and experimental data can be acquired efficiently through an automatic evaluation system, which was also developed independently. The quality and amount of data is vastly improved compared to previous techniques used to produce and evaluate a single material in one experiment. In the material physical property simulation, various calculation techniques are used according to the purpose, for example, first-principles calculations, and theoretical calculations are performed to ensure correspondence with experimental data. Various types of physical property parameter group, ranging from general physical properties such as electric resistance and thermal conductivity to detailed physical properties relating to electronic state are acquired as theoretical calculation data.3. Application to the development of a spin-current thermoelectric conversion device A spin-current thermoelectric conversion device recovers waste heat that exists widely in society by converting it into electricity and will, therefore, enable the countless IoT devices that will be installed in the future to continue working for many years even without a power source.  The main issue with a spin-current thermoelectric conversion device is that the thermoelectric conversion efficiency performance has still not reached a practically applicable level. When the recently established material development cycle combining a combinatorial data acquisition platform and AI technologies for materials development was applied on a trial basis to the search for a new platinum (Pt) alloy, this led to various discoveries, including that the Pt alloy was a magnet and the importance of the Pt itself contained in the alloy being spin polarized.  Evaluation of the characteristics of a new alloy CoPtN that is designed to enhance spin polarization of Pt according to AI-derived knowledge confirmed that thermoelectric conversion efficiency around 100 times higher than that of previous Pt alloy was obtained. This level was also much closer to the output level of commercially available thermoelectric conversion elements that use semiconductors. It was also demonstrated that it was possible to significantly shorten development time to around 1 year.  "We will continue to further expand the search for materials using AI in the future, focusing on further improvement in the thermoelectric conversion efficiency of spin-current thermoelectric conversion elements and the development of new low-cost materials," said Eiji Saitoh, Professor, Tohoku University. (1) A thermoelectric device is a device which converts thermal energy directly into electricity and vice versa. (2) The spin current is a flow of a magnetic property of an electron, so-called "spin." (3) http://jpn.nec.com/ai/analyze/pattern.html (4) "Comparison of dissimilarity measures for cluster analysis of X-ray diffraction data from combinatorial libraries" Y. Iwasaki et al., nature partner journal Computational Materials 3, 4 (2017). (5) Proceedings of the 78th JSAP Autumn Meeting 5p-C18-4 (2017) R. Sawada et al. (6) The combinatorial approach involves comprehensively investigating predicted combinations to gain an understanding of the overall trend of search candidates. (7) Bayesian Optimization algorithms are stochastic optimization techniques that are used to search for the maximum or minimum value based on observed facts.  

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21-02-2018
Singapore Budget 2018: impact on business innovation

New technologies and an aging population in a fast-growing Asian economic landscape form the backdrop for Singapore’s Budget 2018.Businesses in Singapore can look forward to more support for adopting new technologies to sharpen their competitive edge, as well as receiving help to venture overseas with the enhancement of the Double Tax Deduction for Internationalization (DTDi).Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat unveiled this week an expansionary Budget 2018 guided by the government's promise of 'vibrant and innovative' economic growth that is both sustainable and inclusive."Budget 2018 is about laying the foundation for our nation's development in the next decade,'' the minister said at the parliament session on Monday.This year, Singapore will put aside S$20 billion for infrastructure, S$12.8 billion for education and, in the face of an aging population, S$10.2 billion for healthcare expenditure.With digital technologies gaining importance in all industry sectors, an additional S$145 million will be put aside for the TechSkills Accelerator (TeSA) programme over the next three years to ensure that relevant skillsets are available.TeSA will be expanded into sectors like manufacturing and professional services to equip more people with emerging digital skills.This budget, experts say, offers a significant step forward by setting a roadmap and strategy for the next decade, especially the need for businesses to move away from competing based on cost and differentiate themselves through innovation instead.Pages1 2 » last »

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21-02-2018
IDC forecasts global Smart Cities initiatives tech spending to reach $80b in 2018

Worldwide spending on the technologies that enable Smart Cities initiatives is forecast to reach $80 billion in 2018, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC). In the first release of the Worldwide Semiannual Smart Cities Spending Guide, IDC provides a detailed look at the technology investments associated with a range of Smart Cities priorities and use cases. As these initiatives gain traction, IDC expects spending to accelerate over the 2016-2021 forecast period, growing to $135 billion in 2021."Smart Cities have recently evolved from a collection of discrete flagship projects to a sizeable market opportunity that will drive significant technology investments in 2018 and beyond," said Serena Da Rold, program manager in IDC's Customer Insights & Analysis Group. "IDC believes that the strategic priorities we identified will drive digital transformation across cities of all sizes, but our research demonstrates that there can be significant differences in the focus of investments across regions. The new spending guide is a powerful tool to help vendors identify where the best opportunities lie for each specific use case now and over the next several years."Smart Cities attain digital transformation in an urban ecosystem to meet environmental, financial, and social outcomes. In IDC's view, a Smart City begins to be developed when multiple smart initiatives are coordinated to leverage technology investments across an entire city, use common platforms to decrease service time/maintenance costs, share data across systems, and tie IT investments clearly to smart missions. Smart City programs are enabled by 3rd Platform technologies, and emerging technologies are accelerated in the city ecosystem to deliver innovative solutions in very specific areas.The strategic priorities that IDC believes will see the most spending in 2018 and throughout the forecast are intelligent transportation, data-driven public safety, and resilient energy and infrastructure. Intelligent traffic and transit and fixed visual surveillance are the two largest use cases in terms of worldwide spending, followed by smart outdoor lighting and environmental monitoring. While these use cases attract considerable investments in most geographies, the focus shifts across different regions. Intelligent traffic and transit will be the top priority in investment terms in the United States, Japan, and Western Europe. Fixed visual surveillance will be the leading use case in China and the second largest in the United States, while environmental monitoring will be relatively more important in Japan.On a geographic basis, the United States will be the largest market for Smart City technologies with spending forecast to reach $22 billion in 2018. China will be a close second with 2018 spending expected to be nearly $21 billion. The two countries will share a similar growth trajectory with five-year compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) of 19.0% and 19.3%, respectively. The regions that will see the fastest spending growth are Latin America (28.7% CAGR) and Canada (22.5% CAGR).IDC's Worldwide Semiannual Smart Cities Spending Guide quantifies the expected technology opportunity around smart cities initiatives from a region and worldwide level. Spending data is available for nine regions with a focus on 15 use cases across five strategic priorities, as well as the overall Smart Cities market size. The spending guide is designed to provide IT vendors with insights into this rapidly growing market and how the market will develop over the five-year forecast period.

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21-02-2018
Digital to drive Connected Core projects rising in 2018 says IDC Financial Insights

There is a resurgence of core banking modernization efforts across Asia/Pacific banks, according to IDC Financial Insights. In its latest report titled, More Game Changers in Asia/Pacific’s Race for Connected Core Banking, the analyst said there are 35 projects in the pipeline that bring together the principles of iterative core banking replacement with banks’ preference for platform-based, componentized core banking systems.The impending upsurge in core banking and digital projects built around a Connected Core reverses the decline in the number of deals that started more than 10 years ago, which worsened through the global financial crisis, and even persisting up to the rise of digital trends that now impact financial services.Michael Araneta (photo right), AVP for IDC Financial Insights Asia/Pacific commented that core banking modernization projects drive an increase in IT spending in other noncore areas. “The pull-through becomes stronger this time around as the organization will have to skill up in many areas, such as information architecture discipline, knowledge on open API frameworks, and competencies in iterative development. All these make core banking modernization truly transformative," he added.The technologies used in this new style of core transformation — open application programming interfaces (APIs), microservices, and agile development — create an environment that IDC Financial Insights refer to as the Connected Core.One of the benefits of the Connected Core is the bank is more quickly able to build digital capabilities that allow them to respond to the digital era. In short, they can build digital capabilities around a Connected Core. This is enticing for many institutions as it allows them to launch lifestyle services, further embedding the activities of banking (payments, deposit taking, lending) into the day-to-day life of the customer.In general, the new core banking systems expected in the coming years allow the organization to support the upsurge of interactions and transactions in the new world of banking. This is especially crucial for markets in the region with large populations, such as China, India, Indonesia, Philippines, and Vietnam. These markets have seen populations leapfrog traditional banking channels (branches) to become prolific users of mobile banking apps and other virtual channels."Banks now will have to assess how transformation of their core system will be a key part of their overall transformation. The decision will most likely be to not decommission the old core system and replace it with a new one but rather to abstract as much business logic from their current core and iteratively improve digital capabilities around that core," adds Sneha Kapoor (photo left), Senior Research Manager at IDC Financial Insights Asia/Pacific. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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21-02-2018
Aite says merchant payment management strategic to online growth

Aite Group’s most recent report, The Strategic Importance of Merchant Payment Management, reveals that companies strive to provide the best possible payment experience to their customers in order to optimize customer satisfaction and convert customer visits into sales, but how do best-in-class companies excel in payment management and use it as a competitive advantage?“As payment management becomes more strategic, leading companies see payments as a true enabler for the business and as a competitive differentiator,” says Ron van Wezel, senior analyst at Aite Group. “They consider payments as essential to increasing customer loyalty and winning new customers,” he explains.“For the majority of online merchants, the full potential of payment management is yet to be realized; they should analyze what it takes to give payments a more prominent role in their customer strategy and unlock its value,” van Wezel adds. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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21-02-2018
OCBC Bank ups customer experience with facial recognition tech

NEC today announced the successful testing and roll-out of a facial recognition system at the Holland Village branch of OCBC Bank. Designed to identify its top banking clients, the bank says the system was adopted as part of its digital efforts to improve service excellence.Implemented since December last year, the system can identify OCBC Premier Banking customers in real-time as they approach the lounge within the branch. With no need for them to stop or look at the camera, this offers an unobtrusive way for the bank to identify them.With customers promptly identified, the relevant manager can then greet them by their name, offer them their preferred drinks, and quickly review their records to offer personalized service. Details of their visit are also captured automatically. NEC says the system utilizes the company’s own AI engine for face recognition.NEC says its technology can be leveraged for customer authentication for transaction as a second factor for financial institutions, or to monitor for individuals who loiter on the premises. In addition, brands can use it to offer tailored advertising signage and marketing material using facial recognition to understand the age and gender of patrons.“OCBC is committed to our service quality and implementing facial recognition to elevate the customer experience is one of the first steps that we are doing in the digital economy,” said Pranav Seth, a senior VP at OCBC Bank.“Since introducing it, we received positive feedback from customers who were impressed by the personalized hospitality enabled by fast and accurate identification. Going forward, we will evaluate and consider the extension of the capability beyond customer service,” he said.“We are pleased to work with OCBC Bank to provide this cutting-edge facial recognition solution to help improve the overall delivery of services to their valued clientele. We hope that through this co-creation we have helped OCBC Bank stay competitive in this fast-paced industry where customer experience is key,” said Lim Kok Quee, managing director of NEC Asia Pacific.Lim says NEC looks forward to exploring the use of technologies such as artificial intelligence and biometrics to help customers digitally transform their businesses.Further reading:Poor customer experience frustrates Singapore consumersAI fueling customer experience strategies for top brandsPersonalization in a customer centric world Caption: Image credit: iStockphoto by Getty Images

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20-02-2018
Valentine’s Day spend soars in Asia Pacific

Sentimental spending in the region has heated up by 22 percent since 2015, according to findings by Mastercard. Overall transactions during the Valentine’s Day period also shot up by 74 percent over the last three years, indicating Asia Pacific’s consumers are feeling more loved than ever. The annual “Mastercard Love Index”, created by analyzing global credit, debit and prepaid transactions from 11 - 14 February between the years 2015 - 2017 shows that food is the universal language of affection. Across Asia Pacific, dinner dates consumed 69 percent share of spend and nearly a third of transactions in 2017. Travel during Valentine’s Day (via plane or train) also saw a significant rise as the number of transactions increased by 17 percent in 2017, accounting for 21 percent of total spend over the same period. Indulging in a hotel stay remains a firm favorite with a 34 percent share of spend, but couples who prefer staying home are not alone. Mastercard’s research found that nearly 1 in 3 people celebrated this holiday with a quiet night in. The research showed that 42 percent of people planned to buy a present for their loved ones. Consumers in Philippines (71 percent) and Thailand (71 percent) are the region’s most enthusiastic givers, followed by China at 63 percent and Singaporeans at 59 percent. Traditional treats like flowers and jewelry have been the gifts of choice since 2015, as overall spend bloomed by 39 percent and 21 percent respectively. Data suggests that people are no longer leaving purchases to the last minute, as the majority (28 percent) of Valentine’s purchases are made on 11 February (4.6 million transactions over the last three years). Purchase habits during the Valentine’s Day period are also changing, with contactless payments rising in popularity. Tap-and-go payments tracked a 46 percent increase in transactions made, while its value rose by 166 percent. Meanwhile, the appetite for online shopping has grown with a healthy 30 percent increase in the number of e-commerce transactions. However, 89 percent of Valentine’s Day transactions are still made in person.  Regional summary of consumer spending habits across the globe:  KEY SPENDING PATTERNS PER REGION DURING VALENTINE’S DAY PERIOD ACROSS 2015 - 2017 Asia Pacific       Sentimental spending has increased by 22% since 2015, with the overall number of transactions up by 74% 30% increase in the number of e-commerce transactions People are planning ahead with the majority (28%) of Valentine’s purchases happening on the 11th February (4.6 million transactions) The number of transactions on transportation (air and/or train) increased by 17% in 2017, accounting for 21% of total spend during the Valentine’s Day period The share of contactless transactions has seen an increase of 46%, and thevalue of these transactions increased by 166% Spend on flowers in APAC increased by 39% vs. 2015 and the number of transactions also increased by 61%. Jewelry has seen overall spend increase by 21% with transactions increasing by 58% vs. 2015 Canada The number of transactions on transportation (air and/or train) increased by 27% in 2017,  accounting for 33% of total spend The share of contactless transactions has seen an increase of 96% since 2015, and the value of these transactions increased by 206% Canada saw a 216% increase in the number of e-commerce transactions in the period Canadians are planning ahead with the majority (30%) of Valentine’s purchases happening on the 11th February (1.6 million transactions globally) Europe       Sentimental spending increased by 19% since 2015 in Europe, with the overall number of transactions up by 39% The number of transactions on transportation (air and/or train) increased by 38% in 2017, accounting for 31% of total Share of spend on dining out at restaurants has remained stable; taking a29% share of spend and a 65% share of transactions in 2017 Spend on flowers has increased by 29% vs. 2015, and the number of transactions has increased by 48%. Jewelry has seen spend decrease by 5%with transactions increasing by 15% vs. 2015 Latin America and the Caribbean       LAC saw a 327% increase in the number of e-commerce transactions The number of transactions on flowers has increased by 28%. Jewelry also shows a similar trend with spend decreasing by 57% but interestingly transactions increased by 6% Share of spend on hotels has actually decreased by -29%; taking a 18% share of spend and a 8% share of transactions in 2017 The number of transactions on transportation (air and/or train) increased by 27% in 2017, accounting for 8% of total spend during the Valentine’s Day period Middle East   People are planning ahead in MEA with the majority (29%) of Valentine’s purchases happening on the 11th February (620k transactions globally on February 11th over the past 3 years) Share of spend on hotels has also remained stable over the past 3 years;taking a 41% share of spend and a 21% share of transactions in 2017 Spend on flowers has increased by 96% vs. 2015 with the number of transactions increasing by 71% United States America saw a 106% increase in the number of e-commerce transactions from Valentine’s Day

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20-02-2018
DJI selects Worldpay for e-Commerce payments

Drone manufacturer DJI has deployed Worldpay to help expand its eCommerce platform to reach more customers around the world. With growing consumer interest across Europe and in countries like Australia and Japan, DJI has selected Worldpay as its payments vendor. Worldpay’s local card payment capabilities is expected to assist DJI in connecting with customers in different parts of the world, making its products more accessible for creators, travellers, photographers and those using drone technology for their work.In addition to existing card processing services and coverage, Worldpay also supports a range of alternative payment methods, such as iDEAL in the Netherlands and SOFORT in Germany, allowing merchants to accept more payments via local consumers’ preferred methods.Due to the high average ticket value of its products, DJI requires fraud detection and protection tools. DJI is using Worldpay’s fraud protection tool ‘Risk Guardian’ to enhance protection for its customers and provide the best possible online shopping experience. Since implementing Worldpay’s fraud solution, DJI has seen its fraud to sales ratio drop, all while increasing their overall payment acceptance rates.“The global drone market has exploded in recent years, with consumers finding creative ways to use the technology and bringing new perspectives to their everyday life. This is a very exciting time for the industry. As our technology becomes easier to use, with expanded industry applications, we want to make our drones more accessible to people around the world, whether for work or play,” said Christina Zhang, Treasurer at DJI. “In the near future, we hope to reach more new customers in Europe and Asia Pacific, and create a more seamless and secure experience for our online customers with Worldpay’s payment solution support.”Phil Pomford, General Manager for Asia-Pac, at Worldpay, Inc. said: “Combatting online fraudsters is a primary concern for electronics manufacturers, especially when it comes to cutting-edge technologies like drones. The challenge for growing businesses lies in balancing high-volume sales with the ability to guarantee shoppers a safe and reliable service. Worldpay has helped thousands of companies around the world to achieve this balance, and DJI’s improvements to date prove how crucial a strategic fraud approach is to an organisation’s successful expansion.”

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20-02-2018
Data breach notifications grow 19% in 2017

The Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data fielded 19% more data breach notifications and more than 3,500 complaints during 2017

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20-02-2018
Ruckus Networks signs OEM agreement with Dell EMC

Dell EMC will offer Ruckus Networks' portfolio of wireless products and Cloudpath secure network access solution as Dell-branded products

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20-02-2018
Winc saves 1,200 man-hours annually with Android devices

Delivery business solutions provider Winc Australia (rebranded from Staples Australia) has rolled out Zebra Technologies’ TC55 touch mobile computers across their Australian driver network.Winc is one of the largest business solutions providers in Australia, offering fast, free delivery all over the country. It employs a fleet of delivery drivers who handle around 200,000 deliveries a month, shipping one million items.To ensure reliability and real-time visibility of its operations, Winc upgraded its existing system to Zebra’s rugged TC55 to improve driver productivity and enhance customer experience. These enterprise-grade mobile devices are powered by Android, and Zebra Independent Software Vendor (ISV) partner BluJay Solutions (formerly Blackbay) was responsible for migrating Winc from a Windows-based fleet to the Android platform.Winc rolled out 220 of Zebra’s TC55 touch mobile computers for 14 distribution centers across the country. The devices are loaded with a track-and-trace app provided by BluJay Solutions. As a result of the deployment, Winc has increased scanning compliance from approximately 50% to 98%.Overall, the move to Android has saved each Winc driver around 15 minutes per day, which amounts to a savings of approximately 1,200 man-hours every year.The TC55 is built to withstand the wear and tear of industrial environments, so it’s less likely to fail in the field, ensuring less downtime, and higher productivity and profitability.The intuitive, easy-to-use functionality of the new device and app mean delivery drivers require minimal training to become competent in the new system. In addition, the solution offers more efficient, familiar driver navigation via the Google Maps application, while Wi-Fi connectivity has reduced overall data costs.While full-time delivery drivers can reap the benefits of the rugged TC55, Winc is now also able to utilize BYOD capabilities, especially for its casual or part-time workforce who are able to easily integrate into Winc’s system without the need for additional equipment or training. Operating system and app updates can also be pushed seamlessly to all employees logged onto the system – no matter where they are.Jeremy Birt, COO of Winc Australia, said: “We were looking for a solution that offered better hardware stability to improve scanning for our customers and our drivers. Zebra was our trusted choice after a successful two-decade relationship. The changes in the operating system are seamlessly updated to the devices so the drivers always have the most up-to-date software, regardless of what device they use. We can get a new driver set up and carrying out deliveries quickly, which makes our operation much more flexible. Our drivers love the new system and we plan to expand on a variety of uses for the TC55 beyond deliveries by the end of this year.”“We were excited to be a part of this successful deployment by helping Winc migrate to the Android platform," said Paul Soong, regional director, ANZ, BluJay Solutions. "Tapping onto Zebra’s robust TC55 mobile device, we supplied Winc with the track and trace solutions in our MobileSTAR app, which is easy to set up and use. MobileSTAR’s BYOD provides Winc the added capability to allow casual workers to seamlessly integrate with its delivery system using any device.”  Caption: photo credit: photobylove (istockphoto.com)

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20-02-2018
Industry 4.0: Reinvigorating ASEAN manufacturing

No industry is immune to the disruptions brought by digital technologies. While media, telecommunications, and banking have been among the first to feel the full brunt of these new technologies, manufacturing is now coming into the crosshairs.Globally, many manufacturers, especially those in advanced industries, have been looking for ways to exploit digital technologies. These efforts, generally dubbed “Industry 4.0”, are at a point where greater reliability and lower costs, largely attributable to improved storage and computing capacities, are fueling their rapid adoption over a variety of industry applications.Industry 4.0 is the confluence of disruptive digital technologies that together carry the potential to change the manufacturing sector beyond recognition.The movement has gained critical momentum as a number of factors have come together: an astonishing rise in data volume, computing power, and connectivity; the emergence of advanced data-analytics and business-intelligence capabilities; new forms of human-machine interaction, such as touch interfaces and augmented-reality systems; and improvements in how digital outcomes are transferred to the physical world—for instance, through advanced robotics and 3-D printing.Industry 4.0 is expected to drive productivity increases comparable to those generated by the introduction of the steam engine in the Industrial Revolution. Globally, it is expected to deliver between US$1.2 trillion and $3.7 trillion in value. The Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN), whose member economies have significant manufacturing components, has the potential to capture productivity gains worth $216 billion to $627 billion of this value.In a recent McKinsey survey of more than 200 business leaders throughout ASEAN, the transformative potential of Industry 4.0 was clearly confirmed. Almost all of the respondents, 96 percent, believed Industry 4.0 will bring new business models to their industries and slightly less, 90 percent, said improved performance will be one of the main benefits from these new technologies. Additionally, in manufacturing-based economies like Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam, respondents were generally optimistic about prospects of Industry 4.0.However, even as they acknowledged the potential of digital technologies, respondents showed slow adaptation. Only 13 percent said their companies had begun an Industry 4.0 transformation. ASEAN manufacturers cannot risk failing to capture the large opportunities made possible by these new technologies. By embracing Industry 4.0, ASEAN manufacturers can become the next leaders in their fields.Despite the potential, few manufacturers truly appreciate the enormous long-term possibilities and implications of Industry 4.0 initiatives on their production systems. Too often, managers wrongfully dismiss Industry 4.0 as the latest buzzword. But, the technologies behind this trend will touch all aspects of the manufacturing process. And these technologies provide a clear opportunity for companies in ASEAN to improve their productivity and help the region reassert its status as a global manufacturing hub.Embracing Industry 4.0 technologies in ASEAN countries requires a clear understanding of the obstacles delaying its adoption, a shared vision of its potential benefits, and a policy and education environment that encourages implementation. Manufacturers in ASEAN may have had a slow start in the race toward these new technologies, but the marathon is young and there is ample track ahead to overtake the leaders.Download the full report: Industry 4.0: Reinvigorating ASEAN manufacturing for the future. Caption: photo credit: chombosan (istockphoto.com)

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20-02-2018
Industry 4.0: Reinvigorating ASEAN manufacturing

No industry is immune to the disruptions brought by digital technologies. While media, telecommunications, and banking have been among the first to feel the full brunt of these new technologies, manufacturing is now coming into the crosshairs.Globally, many manufacturers, especially those in advanced industries, have been looking for ways to exploit digital technologies. These efforts, generally dubbed “Industry 4.0”, are at a point where greater reliability and lower costs, largely attributable to improved storage and computing capacities, are fueling their rapid adoption over a variety of industry applications.Industry 4.0 is the confluence of disruptive digital technologies that together carry the potential to change the manufacturing sector beyond recognition.The movement has gained critical momentum as a number of factors have come together: an astonishing rise in data volume, computing power, and connectivity; the emergence of advanced data-analytics and business-intelligence capabilities; new forms of human-machine interaction, such as touch interfaces and augmented-reality systems; and improvements in how digital outcomes are transferred to the physical world—for instance, through advanced robotics and 3-D printing.Industry 4.0 is expected to drive productivity increases comparable to those generated by the introduction of the steam engine in the Industrial Revolution. Globally, it is expected to deliver between US$1.2 trillion and $3.7 trillion in value. The Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN), whose member economies have significant manufacturing components, has the potential to capture productivity gains worth $216 billion to $627 billion of this value.In a recent McKinsey survey of more than 200 business leaders throughout ASEAN, the transformative potential of Industry 4.0 was clearly confirmed. Almost all of the respondents, 96 percent, believed Industry 4.0 will bring new business models to their industries and slightly less, 90 percent, said improved performance will be one of the main benefits from these new technologies. Additionally, in manufacturing-based economies like Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam, respondents were generally optimistic about prospects of Industry 4.0.However, even as they acknowledged the potential of digital technologies, respondents showed slow adaptation. Only 13 percent said their companies had begun an Industry 4.0 transformation. ASEAN manufacturers cannot risk failing to capture the large opportunities made possible by these new technologies. By embracing Industry 4.0, ASEAN manufacturers can become the next leaders in their fields.Despite the potential, few manufacturers truly appreciate the enormous long-term possibilities and implications of Industry 4.0 initiatives on their production systems. Too often, managers wrongfully dismiss Industry 4.0 as the latest buzzword. But, the technologies behind this trend will touch all aspects of the manufacturing process. And these technologies provide a clear opportunity for companies in ASEAN to improve their productivity and help the region reassert its status as a global manufacturing hub.Embracing Industry 4.0 technologies in ASEAN countries requires a clear understanding of the obstacles delaying its adoption, a shared vision of its potential benefits, and a policy and education environment that encourages implementation. Manufacturers in ASEAN may have had a slow start in the race toward these new technologies, but the marathon is young and there is ample track ahead to overtake the leaders.Download the full report: Industry 4.0: Reinvigorating ASEAN manufacturing for the future. Caption: photo credit: chombosan (istockphoto.com)

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20-02-2018
OPINION: China's e-commerce juggernauts probe Hong Kong

GS1 Hong Kong’s new e-Marketplace platform on Taobao and JD.com is a welcome addition to those looking for authentic products on these popular e-commerce sites

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19-02-2018
Banking to lead the APeJ region in public cloud services spending says IDC

The latest IDC Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Spending Guide predicted that spending on public cloud services and infrastructure will reach US$15.08 billion in 2018, an increase of 35.66% over 2017. Banking will lead all other industries accounting for 12.3% or US$1.85 billion in 2018.Although annual spending growth is expected to slow over the 2016-2021 forecast period, the market is expected to hit a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32.58% in public cloud services spending, or a total of $32.27 billion in 2021.Next to banking, Professional Services (US$1.75 billion), Discrete Manufacturing (US$1.63 billion), Telecommunication and Process Manufacturing combined (US$2.39 billion) will round out the top five industries said to spend the most on public cloud services in 2018.However, the industries that will see the fastest spending growth over the five-year forecast period are Construction (37.36% CAGR), Professional Services (36.84% CAGR), and Personal and Consumer Services (36.65% CAGR)."While digital transformation does help to drive the overall market growth, the rapid expansion of datacenter presence from global public clouds services providers at APeJ region does attract enterprises to migrate more workloads to the public cloud environment as that helps to address their concerns in data sovereignty and latency,” says Liew Siew Choon, Senior Market Analyst, IDC Asia/Pacific's Services Research team.Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) will be the largest category of public cloud spending in 2018, contributing about 47.60% to the overall cloud spending in the region. This is due to the fast expansion of datacenters by global public cloud service providers, followed by Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), which is very close to the Infrastructure spending on cloud, with a share of 45.83% on the overall spend.IaaS spending will be fairly balanced throughout the forecast with server spending trending slightly ahead of storage spending. PaaS spending will be led by Application Platforms, which will see the fastest spending growth (37.93% CAGR) over the forecast period. Data Management Software, Data Access, Analysis, and Delivery, and Integration and Orchestration Middleware will also see healthy spending levels in 2018 and beyond.China will be the largest country market for public cloud services in 2018 with its US$5.44 billion spending to account for about 36.10% of APeJ spending. Australia (US$2.85 billion) and India (US$2.12 billion) will be in second and third place respectively in terms of Cloud Spending in the region."China and India, the two largest markets in APeJ will account for about 60% of the region's Cloud market size. The Chinese government has been actively promoting the development of the high-tech industry, and continues to implement its Internet+ strategy is a leading factor for China's adoption to cloud technology, for India accelerated demand by enterprises and govt. towards the implementation of new technologies like Blockchain, AI, IoT etc is making the cloud a bare necessity," says Ashutosh Bisht, Research Manager for Customer Insights & Analysis, IDC Asia/Pacific. Caption: Image from iStockPhoto

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CyberLink Vol.113 January 2018

Cyberport drives FinTech discussion at Asian Financial Forum 2018 

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CyberLink Vol.112 December 2017

Cyberport celebrates strong community of 1,000 companies

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CyberLink Vol.111 November 2017

Cyberport Venture Capital Forum forges win-win partnership for investors and start-ups

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