Digital technologies continue to evolve faster than ever. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and unprecedented internet speeds will transform our world beyond recognition in the coming decades. But how can technology help us on our way to a better world? Here our future technologists share their thoughts. Companies empowering kids to learn new skillsets with emerging technology.
Self-driving vehicles, intelligent virtual assistants, and industrial robots are no longer fabrications of sci-fi movie plots. They’ve officially left the movie theatres and hit our roads, into our living rooms, and started packing our food deliveries.
Technological advances and innovations have improved our world in many ways, but how can we go one step further and start using these technologies to address some of the global challenges we face today? At Ericsson ONE, we believe that we can find the right answers by asking the right questions. There are many local roofing companies that are helping across the countries.
How can we transport goods and people more efficiently?
Joakim Formo, Strategic Design Director at Ericsson ONE, believes that new technology will make it possible to improve the way we transport goods and people.
Creating more efficient, cleaner, and safer transportation solutions is a key priority for cities as well as businesses and industries, said Joakim, raising the following considerations:
- Major cities will soon find it possible to ban large trucks or even cars and allow only small zero-emission transport vehicles that are not allowed to drive empty-loaded.
- How can it become rational for someone like Amazon to vigorously optimize their supply chain for a minimal carbon footprint and good health, as they do today for speed of delivery?
From a technology perspective, the basic requirements to enable such new strategies are already there: 5G, coupled with machine learning, unlocks scenarios like this one.
“New technology such as 5G and information communication technology (ICT) is ready to be used to address pressing environmental and societal challenges,” added Joakim.
“The technology is available. The hardest part is developing new ideas and changing how we do things.”
What if mobility systems were designed with equal rights in mind?
Anna Viggedal, Design Lead at Ericsson ONE, asks: “What if mobility systems are designed for equal rights for all and have a small carbon footprint?”
Mobility is essentially about giving people access to something, whether this access is granted virtually or by physically moving something.
“In an urban context, this raises questions about digital public space. Do they exist today? And how can we design them so that they are equally safe and accessible for everyone, instead of widening the gap? “says Anna.
A range of technologies can make this possible. Data and connectivity are central to this idea, not only cellular technologies like 5G but also social technologies. Remote access and mixed reality technologies are the most obvious, and Anna thinks mixed reality technology will become more mainstream and affordable in the coming years.
Anna has a background in industrial design and strategic product design. She wants to find out how virtual behavior affects how we think about physical space and the other way around.
What if solving the world’s most pressing problems was our starting point?
Marcus Goldman, the Lead Design Technologist at Ericsson ONE, asks: “What if the UN Sustainable Development Goals were a blueprint for the future of telecom?”
Over the years, it has become increasingly clear that the ICT industry (and the telecom industry in particular) has the potential to create a strong positive impact on the world and its inhabitants if we have an empathetic, humble, and responsible approach.
A fundamental starting point for this is making sure we address real problems and opportunities. Given the state of the world (even pre-COVID-19), things like eradicating poverty, creating gender equality, and tackling climate change are what matter to a huge number of people today-all, which are encased in sustainable development goals, “says Marcus.
As broad as they are, Marcus believes these goals can be used as a starting point—or guidelines—for further research, helping us identify the role of ICT and telecom in tackling the world’s greatest challenges. He adds that the
Sustainable Development Goals can be used not only as a compass but also to fuel innovation.
Multiple technologies and solutions help us achieve these goals, such as the Internet of Skills and robotic medical research, but 5G connectivity is at the heart of sustainable development.
How do we increase accessibility without increasing physical travel?
Marcus Nyberg, Insights Lead at Ericsson ONE, is looking beyond traditional transportation systems and considering ways to enable access to people, services, and places without physically traveling.
Marcus asks the following questions:
- What if it wasn’t just rapid movement seen as the ultimate success?
- What if we redefined how we approach people’s accessibility needs to better align with broader environmental and social goals?
- What if we combined mobility solutions with physical proximity to services and remote connectivity in more intelligent ways?
Depending on the context and application, there are different requirements for 5G network capabilities, such as sending and receiving massive amounts of data, secure millisecond responses to requests, the use of powerful computing resources, and so on. However, by making these abilities available for innovation, we can help a wide range of people develop more sustainable solutions that meet their needs.
Marcus works closely with partners and colleagues to explore how emerging technologies can help address global challenges and strives to develop ideas and solutions that lead to new ways of addressing societal and individual needs.
Do you want to start innovating with Ericsson ONE? We would love to hear from you.