Huawei’s ICT editor’s eXchange 2024 highlights much needed AI shift

Charles Cheng, Deputy CEO Huawei South Africa

Artificial Intelligence is a buzzword that’s shown unimaginable growth post-COVID-19, and this has created much-needed dialogue into how far AI was expected to soar and the necessary input needed for the perfect AI relationship between humans and machines.

Huawei hosted its annual Huawei ICT Editor’s Exchange in an effort to highlight the shift necessary for boundless potential to be reached with the hope for positive change.

This was not the only reason the industry’s top minds came in one room to exchange ideas. AI could potentially be harmful if left in the wrong hands.

It was necessary for the industry’s who’s-who, especially in South Africa, to negotiate ideas in flagging possible threats while mapping much-needed input to reach a mutually desired long-term goal.

Huawei was the first to highlight the level of investment it had made in youth and AI development with the goal to create tomorrows future tech experts.

Conversations about how AI impacted society, the optimism about the era of self-driving vehicles, how AI could aid doctors in speeding up diagnosis and treatment, and how AI held the potential for positive change necessary in answering questions that hadn’t even been asked, were raised, probed, and negotiated.

Hosted at the Northcliff Boutique Hotel in Johannesburg, the landscape was clear, and discussions came to life as experts tacked the role AI played in the South African economy.

Charles Cheng, Deputy CEO Huawei South Africa

Huawei South Africa Deputy CEO Charles Cheng said, “AI will be the transformative technology of our time and we believe this event will help participants dig deep and better understand its positive impacts in an economy like South Africa’s.”

He spoke on how Huawei was working with several organizations in an effort to deploy future AI solutions.

The goal was to create a landscape that made digital and humans more of a mutually beneficial reality.

Author and ICT analyst Arthur Goldstuck shared insight on the overall growth of AI while articulating the research and development necessary for AI to explore its full potential.

Arthur Goldstuck

Sectors such as agriculture, the medical industry, teaching, and the media landscape were some industries that had seen AI trickle in at an unprecedented pace.

There was a more than decades-long progress in AI growth Goldstuck pointed out, as he unpacked how different sectors were introduced to AI and the industries that were more open to the evolution.

Agriculture had witnessed AI-powered drones that aided in crop health said Goldstuck.

This meant drones improved crop health while combating pests and measuring solid conditions since around 2010.

“AI is here to make us better humans and not to replace us.”

There were a number of other industries that had seen gradual shifts in AI ingenuity, he added.

A spirited Aluwani Chokoe who is the Deputy Director and Spokesperson at the National Youth ICT Council touched on the youth councils challenges, with most of those challenges being access to evolving AI growth.

Aluwani Chokoe, Deputy Director & Spokesperson National Youth ICT Council

Young people in the country should not be left behind as industries evolve as a result of a natural digital revolution.

She lauded Huawei for bridging the gap notoriously known as the digital divide.

All schools needed to be in the right shape to be digitized, maintained Chokoe.

The goal was to ensure that all public schools across Gauteng were digitized.

“AI has the potential to stimulate economic growth by increasing productivity, fostering new business models, and creating high-value jobs.”

The advocate for youth access to digital transformation said she dreamt of a future where youth can take advantage of new AI industries that would mushroom in the near future.

Calvin Huang, Head Cloud Solutions Architect at Huawei South Africa

This was all seconded by Calvin Huang, Head Cloud Solutions Architect at Huawei South Africa who gave the audience insight into how Huawei’s Pangu AI model, now in its third iteration provided industry-specific solutions to customers using Huawei’s broad range of cloud service products.

Huawei’s research on AI expands into platforms for autonomous cars, enhanced computing power, and coding support for research and development workers.

“All of these potential opportunities need to be accelerated with systematic innovation, and that is how Huawei Cloud will play an important role in the AI race,” said Huang.

He showcased how Pangu weather was an example of efficient AI as it could predict a typhoon’s path 10 days before the actual disaster.

Huawei’s Pangu model is being developed to help e-commerce vendors advertise their products in different markets with cutting-edge language translation models.

This would ultimately provide a full range of public and private cloud services.

He said Huawei was looking forward to boosting South Africa’s digital economy.

Also read: Huawei’s CSR flagship program now open for applications



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