Into the Internet of Thinking

Into the Internet of Thinking

Technology is at a point where it is becoming so embedded in people’s daily lives that it is reshaping the whole of society.

With this digital shift comes profound opportunities for businesses to grow, yet change needs to happen through all levels of business.

In this second article of a two-part series we will reveal the final three major IT trends outlined in Accenture’s 2018 Tech Vision, which are powering the transformation and influencing how people live.

In our previous piece, we explored the trends Citizen Artificial Intelligence (AI), where Artificial Intelligence is taking on more sophisticated roles within technology interfaces, and Extended Reality, how virtual and augmented reality technologies are removing the distance to people and experiences.

Frictionless business

Businesses depend on technology-based partnerships for growth, but their own legacy systems aren’t designed to support partnerships at scale. To fully power the connected enterprise, companies need to first redesign themselves, to become a Frictionless Business.

As companies expand their networks, engage in ecosystems and shift rapidly between them, outdated systems that can’t keep pace will be the biggest barrier to growth. Blockchain will play a key role in overcoming these barriers.

Air New Zealand is looking at blockchain technology to connect suppliers and sellers through a marketplace, improving the customer experience and streamlining products across multiple providers.

Reducing costs, enabling swift and secure sharing of information and innovating new products for customers and suppliers alike are all part of the airline’s blockchain-powered frictionless business. 

Robotics, immersive reality, AI and connected devices are bringing a new level of technological sophistication. Enabling intelligence for the next generation of technology demands an overhaul of existing infrastructure, with a balance of cloud and a renewed focus on hardware.

Internet of Thinking

Without an Internet of Thinking approach, companies won’t be able to deliver the sophisticated, intelligent experiences in robotics, immersive reality, AI, or the Internet of Things (IoT) that their next generation of strategies is built on.  

Savvy companies are already taking steps in this direction. Auckland Transport is developing proofs of concepts with industry and universities to use technology to enhance safety and aesthetics on its transport network.

Prior to the proof of concept rolled out to three schools in Auckland, school zone signs were manually installed and maintained, a task that commonly fell to the school’s receptionist over short range radio frequency link.

Without visibility on the condition or presence of the signs, it would be up to the vigilance of the school’s staff or community to report issues with the signs. Now the signs are connected to an IoT network, real-time information relating to the condition of the signs is captured and monitored, accessible via a web app.

Data veracity

Data is the lifeblood of the intelligent enterprise, with the global economy depending on live and accurate information to run.

However inaccurate and manipulated information can compromise a company’s growth. Companies don’t need to accept the risks of poor data quality. The truth is out there, and every business must build a data intelligence practice, drawing from existing data science and cybersecurity capabilities.

The Virtual Health Integrated Network, a partnership between Otago University and Stats New Zealand, links health data to social and economic data, informing world-leading health research, policy, and service design.

It draws from New Zealand’s Integrated Data Infrastructure (IDI) network, distinct from the operational data used by government agencies and health care providers. In the IDI, personal information such as names and addresses are removed, and output from the Data Lab is made confidential, so no one can be identified.

To drive AI, robotics and other revolutionary technologies to their full potential, companies must make a significant effort across key areas of business processes and strategy, from service design to infrastructure transformation to hardware considerations.

This well-earned result will be truly intelligent environments that meet people where they are.

Mary-Anne McCarthy leads Accenture New Zealand’s technology business.

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