New areas of Tech interest: Big Data, Security, Backup

I have been writing and covering on a few areas of technology inside my personal website/blog here for a number of years. Initially, it was mainly on consumer technology products, however, over the years, I had started venturing into B2B/Enterprise technology coverage, mainly Internet of Things (IoT) in a few areas/brands such as The Next Wave and Trends (from Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai)AXON by Greenwave Systems, Future Workplace with Dell and Journey to 5G with Singtel. It had been a very interesting technology adventure into the levels of B2B, thankful to those brands/companies who gave me the opportunities to connect, learn, cover and write about them.

Over the past year, I began to discover new areas of technology interest, while it is probably more applicable on a B2B level, it can also be applied at the B2C consumer level too. One of the areas was on big data and analysis, starting with this forum that I attended recently in June 2017 – “F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare“. The next few interest technology fields that came up on my radar, following this particular forum that I attended were data protection, cybersecurity and backup.

My tech coverage journey in these few areas were all related together, I was working on building a basic starter personal cloud storage solution for my photography business/photographs storage/digital marketing/social media/documents, I got a WD My Cloud 4TB a few months back too.

Next up was on data protection and backup, Acronis then came into the picture. I saw and read about them around 1-2 years back, initially I didn’t know too much about them. Coincidentally, I got to know about them more in details and what they are doing, most recently with the launch of the Acronis True Image 2018 that I discovered more about their products and services in the areas of data protection and backup.

I am going to work on an article on the Acronis True Image 2018 for my small business, for my photography business/photographs storage and also my other work on digital marketing/social media and also my documents storage. Do keep a lookout and I would update with a link here when it is completed!

During the recent 2017 Singapore GP, I also learned about the partnership between Acronis and Scuderia Torro Rosso Formula 1 Racing Team! They are the FIRST Singapore company to sponsor a F1 racing team! It’s not just about sponsorship, they are using Acronis technology in motorsports! Being a motorsports and F1 fan and also an technology enthusiast myself, it’s like an omen for me to use Acronis technology solutions!

It would be a dream come true, if I can cover more in depth and share on Acronis technology in motorsports! I can bring my camera gears to racing tracks and garages! Motorsports + technology + photography sounds like what I like to do!

Stay tuned, hopefully, I can share more on these areas of technology, big data, data protection, cybersecurity and data backup.

Oh yes, maybe more new areas such Blockchain, Bitcoin.

Singtel to deploy Massive MIMO technology at special events

The journey to 5G by Singtel continues, it’s shaping up nicely and progressing towards reaching the 5G standards. Singtel recently announced that they would be deploying massive MIMO technology at special events in Singapore, starting with National Day Parade 2017, taking place very soon on 9th August 2017!

For those who regularly visited National Day Parades over the years, whether at the parade ground itself or in the nearby vicinity, we would encountered and experienced no mobile network coverage due to the huge number of people in the area. With the deployment of the massive MIMO technology, that would relieve the issues that mobile users faced previously. I am looking forward to Singapore reaching the 5G technology standards, it would be very helpful and useful for businesses and consumers.

Let me share with you more information on Singtel to deploy massive MIMO technology at special events from the press release information:

Singtel announced plans to deploy Massive MIMO (Multiple-Input Multiple-Output) technology commercially on its LTE-Advanced mobile network, to enhance mobile data speed experience by up to 200% at special events for its customers. A precursor to 5G technology, Massive MIMO is an advanced solution used to boost network capacity in highly dense environments.

Singtel will team up with Ericsson, Huawei and ZTE to deploy Massive MIMO technology at the Marina Bay area. For a start, Singtel will roll out the network boost at the upcoming National Day celebrations, with other deployments planned for the Singapore F1 Night Race and the New Year countdown event.

Over 150,000 people are expected at the Marina Bay area to celebrate National Day. Singtel mobile customers gathered there will be able to enjoy a better data experience as they share their photos and videos of the exciting performances and fireworks on social media.

Mr Mark Chong, Group Chief Technology Officer, Singtel, said: “On the joyous occasion of our National Day celebrations, Singtel is pleased to be pairing our newly-acquired 2.5GHz spectrum with Massive MIMO technology to expand our network capacity and offer our customers an enhanced mobile experience at this and other special events. We look forward to rolling out new technologies and innovative solutions to support the anticipated growth in mobile data.”

Globally, large crowds gathered at events, such as concerts and festivals, use high volumes of data to share their experiences via real-time videos on social media. This extraordinary behaviour generates a dramatic spike in network traffic, presenting a challenge for operators to provide fast and consistent data speeds.

Singtel has identified Massive MIMO as one of the solutions to the problem. Singtel will use Massive MIMO base stations featuring a large array of 64 antennas that improve spectral efficiency and cell capacity using innovations in radio technologies. The innovative antenna system channels signals to users’ specific locations instead of broadcasting across a geographical area. This multiplies the number of data paths from the cellular base stations, thus increasing network capacity and improving user experience.

Singtel provides Singapore’s fastest nationwide mobile data speeds at 450Mbps and recently launched 800Mbps speeds in the high-traffic Orchard Road area. In addition to having the island’s widest outdoor 4G coverage as rated by IMDA1 for 10 consecutive quarters, Singtel is also ranked the fastest telco in Singapore by global metrics leader, Ookla.

For more information on Singtel’s mobile data speeds, please visit here.

* Information courtesy of Singtel Corporate Communications *

Journey to 5G: Singtel launched near-gigabit speeds

The journey to 5G continues, it is getting there, getting closer. I have been covering on the topic of 5G networks and I have more information to share with my readers and fellow technology enthusiasts.

Singtel is launching in phases, near-gigabit speed on its LTE-Advanced network at selected high traffic outdoor locations across the island, starting with Orchard Road (outdoor areas of Shaw Centre, ION Orchard and Tang Plaza). If you are a Singtel mobile network user, time to test the near-gigabit speed when you are at this part of Orchard Road!

As Singapore moves ahead in her journey to 5G, how we work, live and consume mobile data is going to change. It is going to be interesting to see how 5G networks is going to help us in our everyday life and work. During my course of learning, researching and writing on 5G networks, I would share more information and updates along the way, on the Journey to 5G in Singapore!

Let me share some key information and details of Singtel’s journey to 5G – Near-gigabit speed LTE-Advanced network:

At 800Mbps, it is Southeast Asia’s fastest Gigabit-class LTE mobile data peak speed, delivering up to 60% faster download speeds than prevailing LTE services (at 450Mbps).

The near-gigabit transmission speeds are achieved by scaling pre-5G technology solutions, 4×4 Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (4×4 MIMO) and 256 Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM), coupled with triple carrier aggregation of spectrum exclusive to Singtel.

Starting today, customers with Sony Xperia™ XZ Premium smartphones will be able to enjoy the 800Mbps peak speeds at the outdoor areas of Shaw Centre, ION Orchard and Tang Plaza on Orchard Road. Full deployment at Orchard Road, Raffles Place and Clarke Quay is slated for the end of August. More Cat 16 smartphones supporting 1Gbps speeds are scheduled to be launched later this year.

The 800Mbps service augments Singtel’s nationwide 450Mbps mobile data speeds. In addition to having Singapore’s widest outdoor 4G coverage as rated by IMDA[3] for 10 consecutive quarters, Singtel was also recently named the fastest telco in Singapore by global metrics leader, Ookla.

For more information on Singtel’s mobile data speeds, please visit here.

* Information and details courtesy of Singtel Corporate Communications *

 

Dell Explores Next Era of Human-Machine Partnerships

One of the information technological topics/advancements that companies and brands are talking about right now and in the near coming future, is Internet of Things (IoT). I took a strong interest in this area ever since my overseas trip to Canon EXPO Shanghai conference in 2016 and learning first hand on IoT from a company’s perspective, as well as visiting Greenwave Systems during CommunicAsia 2016 and CommunicAsia 2017.

Most recently in 2017, I also attended The Future Workplace with Dell and a seminar on F1 Technology and The Impact on Healthcare, adding on to my reading and understanding on the subject matter IoT. Although I am not a subject expert, I do have a keen interest on how IoT is going to impact and affect how we humans use and consume technology in the future. The future of IoT can help us live and work better, it can also affect us with the possibility of replacing our jobs.

What is the next era of Human-Machine partnerships? How is it going to be like? Are you afraid or are you excited? Will your job still be there in the next 5 to 10 years or will it be replaced by technology and machines? Last but not least, are you ready for IoT to be even more integrated in your work and home in the coming near future (IMHO, it might be as early as 5-10 years away) ?

Dell has partnered with the Institute for the Future (IFTF) and 20 global experts to study the changing relationship between people and technology and how the relationship will manifest itself in society, business and work over the next decade. Dell is sharing the results today from the report titled ‘The next era of human machine partnerships.’

While I am reading up on the reports, their views and analysis, I am also sharing key information and links here for the readers, from the press release below:

Dell Technologies commissioned the study to help companies navigate an uncertain world and prepare for the future. Today, digital disruption is ruthlessly redrawing industries. For the first time in modern history, global leaders can’t predict how their industry will fare further down the line. According to Dell’s Digital Transformation Index,61% of APJ business leaders have experienced significant disruption to their industries as a result of digital technologies. And more than half of businesses believe there’s a possibility their company will become obsolete within the next three to five years.

The report forecasts that emerging technologies, supported by massive advancements in software, big data and processing power, will reshape lives. Society will enter a new phase in its relationship with machines, which will be characterized by:

  • Even greater efficiency and possibility than ever before, helping humans transcend our limitations
  • Humans as “digital conductors” in which technology will work as an extension of people, helping to better direct and manage daily activities
  • Work chasing people, in which by using advanced data-driven matchmaking technologies, organizations can find and employ talent from across the world
  • People learning “in the moment,” as the pace of change will be so rapid that new industries will be created and new skills will be required to survive

Other report highlights include:

  • In 2030 humans’ reliance on technology will evolve into a true partnership with humans, bringing skills such as creativity, passion and an entrepreneurial mindset. This will align with the machines’ ability to bring speed, automation and efficiencies, and the resulting productivity will allow for new opportunities within industries and roles.
  • By 2030 personalized, integrated artificial intelligence (AI) assistants will go well beyond what assistants can do now. They’ll take care of us in predictive and automated ways.
  • Technology won’t necessarily replace workers, but the process of finding work will change. Work will cease to be a place but a series of tasks. Machine learning technologies will make individuals’ skills and competencies searchable, and organizations will pursue the best talent for discrete tasks.
  • An estimated 85 percent of jobs in 2030 haven’t been invented yet. The pace of change will be so rapid that people will learn “in-the-moment” using new technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality. The ability to gain new knowledge will be more valuable than the knowledge itself.

Additional and useful links for further reading

Personal Thoughts and Views

No matter how we want to look at IoT, we cannot avoid it, even if some of you don’t want to look at it or ignore it. The future of IoT is going to impact us in both good and bad ways. Like the Scout’s motto, “Be Prepared”, we have to be prepared, for the upcoming changes, to change, adapt, innovate, learn and re-learn, adopt, move on and grow together with IoT. If not, you might become obsolete and be left behind.

* Information courtesy of Dell Technologies and Cohn & Wolfe Singapore *

AXON Predict by Greenwave Systems @ CommunicAsia 2017

In my own personal technology writing adventures covering and writing in the field of Internet of Things (IoT), this particular maiden journey started in 2016, I was introduced to Greenwave Systems, the global managed services and Internet of Things (IoT) software leader, thanks to my friend Wee Wu of Neo Dimension who invited me to visit Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia 2016 in Singapore.

It was an eye opener to know more about IoT software systems and how they had already started coming into our daily life without us realising it at times.

I shared about my IoT learning experiences to Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia 2016 in this article that I wrote in June 2016, after my visit and listening to Jim Hunter sharing and demonstration of the AXON Platform. For a recap of my sharing, please visit my article – AXON Platform by Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia 2016.

Greenwave Systems was back for CommunicAsia 2017 and it was an honour to be invited back again to visit Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia! I had the opportunity to write and continue my sharing on Greenwave Systems since the article coverage I wrote in 2016. Arriving at Greenwave Systems seminar room, it was great to meet Jim Hunter again, he’s the Chief Scientist and Technology Evangelist of Greenwave Systems. Jim gave me a run through with a detailed and interesting presentation on the AXON Platform and AXON Predict.

AXON Platform – B2C

Listening and watching Jim’s presentation AXON Platform, it was a very good refresher for me. I saw the demonstration of how the AXON Platform works during my visit to Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia 2016. Therefore, I would not be writing too much in detail here because most of the references and notes were written inside my 2016 article coverage.

While I was listening to the presentation and watching the demonstration of the AXON Platform, I am also thinking about how smart and connected the various types of devices that we might have in our internet/technology connected home using the smartphone app, AXON Platform and using the common language of the AXON Platform, getting the non related techological devices to “talk, connect and work with each other”. I saw security alarms, security monitor cameras, bluetooth speakers, lighting systems, in action, using the AXON Platform to give instructions to them for it to be carried out, thus making the home smart and connected.

I was also thinking of which type of white goods (kitchen appliances) would be suitable to be connected and working with the AXON Platform whereby the home owner can give instructions to the white goods and get them ready when they reach their home. Some of the white goods could be coffee machine, electric kettle, microwave oven (if the home owner place the food inside before they leave the home).

The home of the future is moving towards a technologically smart and connected home and I feel AXON Platform can be the crucial element that brings both technology, products and consumers together in a home.

AXON Predict – B2B

Earlier, you have read on how the AXON Platform makes a difference and impact to the end consumer at home. Now, I am going to share on how AXON Platform extends into the other industries, on a Business to Business (B2B) level.

Greenwave Systems recently acquired Predixion Software, a data analytics company in February 2017. This would allow Greenwave Systems to offer real-time visual edge analytics solution called AXON Predict. This Greenwave Systems AXON Predict performs analytics “at” the edge, giving business owners a new dimension and arena to work with and on. With this level of advanced analytics, intelligence and information to the machines and sensors on every step of the network, the companies adopting the AXON Predict platform is able to take appopriate real-time action at the source of the input. Companies don’t have to wait for the information and intelligence to be pushed to the cloud for processing, saving up precious time and lowering asset management costs.

With AXON Predict working totgether within the Internet of Things (IoT), different businesses such as shipping/logistics industry, farming and windmill farms, are examples of companies using the power and technology of AXON Predict for their daily business operations. Check out the videos produced by Greenwave Systems below, on the AXON Predict and the some of the industries that are currently using their AXON Predict technology platform.

Any company or industry that utilises real time data analytics, intelligence and information gathering, is able to manage their businesses more effectively and efficiently, through cost savings, prevention, maintenance and forecasting.

“We’ve seen a real need for this in the market and our customers have affirmed our belief; smart devices often lack the ability to analyze real-time data at the source, causing latency, compliance and cost issues associated with data loss,” said Arkell. “We’re addressing this pain point head on by delivering intelligence to make devices and ordinary silicon smarter. Our analytics engine provides sharper insights and faster response times for our customers and helps them improve both their top and bottom line.”

Source: Greenwave Systems Press Release

With AXON Platfrom and AXON Predict, we can see where and how IoT is shaping, changing and impacting businesses and consumers. The world of IoT is very big and getting even bigger down the road in the next few years. How fast and how much have businesses (and also end consumers) adapt and adopt changes, innovations and disruptions through the IoT world?

IoT, Big Data, Analytics, AR, VR, MR – Which of them is/are the next revolution?

On this segment, it’s more of my personal thoughts and views of IoT after visiting Greenwave Systems at CommunicAsia 2017, recapping on AXON Platform and learning about their AXON Predict.

My maiden entry into the world of IoT began in May 2016, I wrote a short article here on my this site, it started from my visit to Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai. That was followed by visiting Greenwave Systems in June 2016 during CommunicAsia 2016.

During this period of time from 2016 to 2017 (at the point of time when this article was written) when I was just touching the tip of the iceberg of this huge IoT world, I also saw the world of AR, VR and MR. I also attended a presentation and panel discussion on “F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare”.The revolution and evolution of technology is riding and coming faster to you than you can imagine.

From my May 2016 article that I wrote

Internet of Things is the next growth area, revolutionising business and their outreach towards their customers with technology, connectivity and gadgets. This growth area is estimated to be worth a potential of $14.4 trillion for companies worldwide (Source: Salesforce)

Internet of Things, connecting people, connecting technology, connecting eco-systems between people, devices and technology. Is the Internet of Things a whole new world out there or is it a world growing more connected? 

1 year later, I am continuing to learn, experience, write and share on the world of IoT. Seth Godin recently wrote an article (dated 12th June 2017) about accelerating revolutions where he spoke on IoT, revolutions are accelerating, the impacts, the pace and changes to culture and lifestyle with technology.

We’re living right now in the connection revolution, one powered by the internet, in which people connect to people, computers connect to computers and our culture changes ever faster, daily.

Source: Seth Godin

The World Economic Forum recently published an article on 14th June 2017, titled “The Fourth Industrial Revolution is about empowering people, not the rise of the machines

The world of IoT is already upon us, whether we like it or not, it will help us, it will also affect us, in work, in our daily life. The growth of IoT will only grow and expand even faster.

In my humble personal opinion, views and thoughts, I see the next revolution of IoT in the areas of data – huge raw data, information and intelligence, followed by the data analytics, through our various cloud networks (storage, processing, analytics) and 5G telecommunication mobile networks.

After learning about AXON Predict during CommunicAsia 2017, my view is that they are already ahead of the current IoT trends and revolution. Although AXON Predict is currently more suitable for businesses and industries (B2B level), I am thinking whether it could reach the end consumer level? Would there be a day when the end consumer is also able to tap on the technological platform of AXON Predict?

The IoT world, the revolution, the changes, disruption, we can change, adapt and adopt, embrace and grow with IoT helping us to lead a better life and doing our work more efficiently and effectively.

Welcome to the world of IoT, if you haven’t heard of this term.

* I would like to thank Greenwave Systems and Ying Communications for the invitation to visit during CommunicAsia 2017 *

F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare

The fast high octane driving action of Formula One (F1) and healthcare, how can these two sectors be interlinked or working together in our world of technology advancements in both medical and technology fields? If we only based it on looking on paper figures and stories alone, and not in-depth into them, sports racing technology in F1 doesn’t have a perfect 1.0 correlation with the healthcare industry.

Yes, F1 sports racing have sports athletes in peak physical and mental condition, through body monitoring through sensors. The F1 drivers are always taken care of in the healthcare segment, ensuring their peak condition to compete in a very competitive, dangerous yet controlled sporting environment. In this segment, healthcare provisions and standards play a very integral part to the F1 sports racing industry.

Therefore, the current technology used in F1 can be applied in our healthcare industry, in our everyday life, in medical institutions such as hospitals and clinics, for everybody who needs the medical services. Beyond the F1 sports industry, it’s about how F1 technology can be transferred across to the healthcare industry in general, how and where to apply them, that can a wide area to discuss and work on from both sides of the F1 and healthcare practitioners.

At a recent SGInnovate Forum titled “F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare” that I attended, there were interesting presentations and discussions by the speakers present during the panel discussion.

Moderator

Steve Leonard, Founding CEO, SGInnovate

Panelists

– Dr Adam Hill, Chief Medical Officer, McLaren Applied Technologies

– Assoc Prof Low Cheng Ooi, Chief Medical Informatics Officer, MOH Singapore

– Mr Chua Chee Yong, Director Planning Group, Integrated Health Information Systems Pte Ltd (IHIS), Head IT Strategy and Planning, MOH Singapore

– Dr Sophia Chew, Cardiac Anaesthetist, Singapore General Hospital

During the forum event, there were interesting presentations and topics brought up by the audience during the panel discussion. While I am unable to share everything here in my article, I was able to connect the dots across supposedly very different industries and practices.

My prior professional experience in financial advisory (having to learn a bit on medical terms, conditions and medical related matters because of the areas in life insurance and medical insurance), my personal interest in F1 because I am a fan of motorsports, being a patient myself (from getting operated on my injuries and having to follow up with my specialist doctor yearly for now) and finally a technology enthusiast that consumes different forms of data and information on the internet/social media.

With my wide areas of experiences and interests, I didn’t get too lost during the panel discussion, considering that I am not a professional in the medical, IT or data analytics industries.

The professional expertise from the Formula One industries, analysing and collecting data and information from the racing drivers, weather conditions, racing conditions, thereafter, producing crucial and important information for future racing competitions. All these are very useful and this particular expertise can be transferred across into the medical field and applied there. It is much easier for a B2B approach (Business to Business) transfer of expertise and technology than a B2C approach (Business to Consumer) who may not be able to understand the complexity and technicality of the entire process.

However, we human beings, face aging, illness, body wear and tear over time. While the human race may not see it that closely related at this current juncture in time, maybe in the future, medical records of patients can be stored confidentially and safely, the patient’s medical records can be accessed by the patient themselves or when they visit other doctors in other medical institutions. How long will this take? Your guess is as good as mine.

During the panel discussion, one of the guests brought up a question on health insurance, in relation to the forum discussion topic. On this topic, with my prior professional experience in the financial advisory industry, I can understand and relate to this particular question posed. I am not going to write it down in detail here, it can be a lengthy discussion and can be an article long in content. For health insurance premiums to change, if insurance companies have access to more customers health information and data, there could be a possibility. However, there are a lot more factors to consider before this could even be a possibility in the future.

F1 Technology and Healthcare might not seem like the best partnership on paper, yet the expertise and technology behind F1 can be transferred and applied in the healthcare industry. This is a great example of how technology can impact and improve our life, although it is not so obvious and easy to understand, from the end consumer perspective.

If you are keen to listen to the SGInnovate Forum “F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare”, you can visit their Facebook Page and view their video!

The Future Workplace with Dell

In today’s workplace environment, take a break and reflect back on how much it has changed over the past 5 to 10 years, followed by the past 10 to 20 years. How much, how big and drastic the changes in the workplace environment over all these years? Now, look at your current workplace, technology and innovations, the disruptions and changes to our work environment. What does the future workplace looks like?

In a recent media event organised by Dell, titled Dell Future Workplace, I had a glimpse into the upcoming changes to how our future workplace might look like (in some cases, they are already into our working environment). During the introduction by key Dell management staff, this quote resonates with me

“The next industrial revolution is upon us”

The Internet of Things (IoT), gadgets, devices and with the boom of social media and internet usage, lots of disruptions are taking place right here right now. There are more changes coming such as 5G networks, 8K video broadcasting. How true indeed, the next industrial revolution is upon us, coming to us fast and furious. Innovate and adapt or else you be disrupted.

Look at the way how technology, innovation and work lifestyle is changing (and disrupting) how we do our work and approach our workflow. At Dell Future Workplace, I discovered some Dell products that caught my interest, for the mobile workforce – On The Go Professionals and specialised workers – Creative Professionals. I will share in another article on my photography and travel interest site, in the area of Dell Future Workplace for Creative Professionals because I am a photographer as my main profession.

In my side profession (a.k.a. taking on other jobs) I am working in the areas of marketing (mix of digital and traditional), social media, writing (blog). Therefore, On The Go Professionals also strikes a common bond with me and my workflow.

What are the new, interesting and amazing Dell family of products for the Future Workplace? Let me share with you, especially the business owners on the range of Dell commercial products showcased at the Dell Future Workplace event –

Dell commercial devices refresh

Dell’s line of OptiPlex, Latitude and Precision commercial products get upgraded with 7th Gen Intel® Core™ processors, USB-C with Thunderbolt™ 3 connectivity options and updated professional graphics from NVIDIA and AMD.

The award-winning 12-inch Latitude 5285 2-in-1 weighs less than 1kg and features a unique auto-deploy kickstand that extends up to 150 degrees for multiple viewing angles and has multiple connectivity options.

For desktop lovers looking for space-saving designs, Dell has redefined the desktop experience with an updated line of OptiPlex small and micro form factor desktops. These sleek products provide full desktop performance and productivity in compact chassis that can be mounted behind corresponding displays with our innovative AIO stands or under a table to free up desk space.

Dell Canvas – Work at the speed of thought

What began as the Dell smart desk concept in 2014 evolved into Dell Canvas—a new category of smart workspace technology that expands creative productivity for content developers and designers. The 27-inch QHD smart workspace can be used at an angle or flat on a desk so professionals can create, communicate and express their thoughts and ideas as naturally as they do with pen on paper. For example, through the use of touch, digital pen and totems, the Dell Canvas turns drawings into part of the digital workflow and enhances collaboration. Developed in partnership with Microsoft Corp. and powered by virtually any Windows 10 device, Dell Canvas plugs seamlessly into software solutions from partners including Adobe, Autodesk, AVID, Dassault Systems, SolidWorks and Microsoft to unleash the creative genius in everyone.

Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 – Designed for the home and business

Launched in Singapore earlier this March, the world’s smallest 13-inch 2-in-1[1] offers a 360-degree hinge for multiple productivity and viewing options using Continuum, up to 15 hours of battery life[2] and eye-popping clarity with a gorgeous QHD+ (5.7M pixels) InfinityEdge touch display—another first for a 2-in-1.

The fan-less design keeps it silent and the quick-booting solid state drive has it up and running in seconds. And for working professionals, the XPS 13 2-in-1 functions as a business laptop with security features and can be configured with 7th Gen Intel® Core™ vPro™ processors, Dell BIOS and manageability software—all backed by Dell’s global ProSupport services.

Precision 5720 AIO – The best sound quality of any all-in-one PC

Some All-in-One (AIO) PCs on the market today treat the audio experience as an afterthought. Co-created with Jack Joseph Puig, Grammy™ award winning producer and director of creative innovation at Waves Audio, the new Precision 5720 AIO, cranks sound to a whole new level with built-in audio quality that previously required an external sound bar. With full frequency range high-fidelity audio built in, it delivers the best sound available in an AIO with 10 speakers pumping out sound at 50W per channel.

The viewing experience is equally impressive with a beautiful 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) edge-to-edge touch display supporting 100 percent Adobe RGB color gamut. The Precision 5720 AIO delivers more performance options with Intel® Xeon® processors, AMD Radeon™ Pro graphics capable of powering VR and outstanding reliability with ISV certifications for top programs like AVID and SolidWorks, as well as leading security and manageability software.

* Information and details courtesy of Dell *

Personal thoughts and views

Being a small business owner myself (photography profession + marketing / social work), some of the Dell products caught my attention, the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, OptiPlex and Precision AIO and Dell Canvas. There is also the Latitude 5289 2-in-1, not too bad in technical specifications and performance, however, I might be more leaning towards the XPS 13 2-in-1.

The OptiPlex looks really small yet they are packed with some powerful technical specifications. Moreover, they have a few different range of models and also the All-in-One Desktop solutions to your business needs.

I will give the Dell Canvas and Precision 5720 AIO more attention in a separate article post on my photography and travel interest site.

At the Dell Future Workplace event, there were zones setup by businesses to showcase how various Dell products played a part in their working environment and workflow.

Dell Future Workplace – On The Go Professionals

Dell Future Workplace – Desk Centric Workers

Dell Future Workplace – Specialised Workers (Experiential Workers)

Pricing and availability

All products are available through Dell and its authorized partners

If you are a small business owner or a medium to big company size workforce, Dell workplace solutions are there for you to look into. Mix and match your needs with the various types of Dell Future Workplace solutions.

Personally, my ideal Dell Future Workplace setup in the context of the “On The Go Professionals” would be Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, OptiPlex and a Dell Ultra Sharp Monitor.

[1] Based on Principled Technologies Report of November 2016, the smallest refers total surface area of the notebooks.

[2] MobileMark 2014 battery benchmark: XPS 13 2-in-1 tested with 7th Gen Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD and FHD display. Based on testing using the MobileMark 2014 battery life benchmark test. For more information about this benchmark test, visit www.bapco.com. Actual battery life may be significantly less than the test results and varies depending on product configuration and use, software, usage, operating conditions, power management settings and other factors. Maximum battery life will decrease with time.

NGMN Forum 2017 hosted by Singtel

In January 2017, Singtel hosted Next Generation Mobile Networks (NGMN) Forum in Singapore, held at the Mandarin Orchard Singapore. Although this article post is a bit delayed, the progress and plans for the next generation mobile networks, technology, infrastructure, usage and growth are ongoing, building and expanding towards 5G in Singapore, coming soon in a few years time.

I was at the NGMN Forum 2017 on the first day, listened to the opening address by Assistant Chief Executive and Director-General (Telecom and Postal) Ms Aileen Chia. She shared some key pointers for the participants at NGMN Forum 2017, the future and growth of mobile networks, in Singapore and around the world. While the content and topics looked like they were only for Business to Business (B2B), in reality, the journey towards 5G for Singapore and around the world affects and impacts everybody (in both good and bad ways), from the businesses to the end consumer in the society. The future of the world, also for Singapore, are about technology changes, disruption, innovation and transformation from the business organisations to the end consumers. The information communications sector, economy and society are able to embrace opportunities and challenges. The next big thing is Data, the “new oil” of the 21st century. The future digital economy, IoT (Internet of Things), devices and how we consume data, use data in our daily life and work, this is going to be massive.

After listening to the opening address, I had a tour around some of the partners showcase of their 5G technology and infrastructure. Singtel is making a lot of progress in their 5G journey in Singapore and during an earlier event in August 2016 organised by Singtel that I attended – Singtel and Ericsson were the first to showcase 5G in Southeast Asia. The changes, impacts and opportunities with 5G are coming soon to us in Singapore, on both the B2B and B2C level.

On the B2B level, the partners exhibiting their 5G infrastructure and application of the 5G technology, I saw drones in action that could be activated during natural disaster, robotics obeying the commands of the human hand movement, traffic light control, security and surveillance, all of them powered by the upcoming 5G technology networks.

On the B2C level, as the consumer on the street, what do you think? How would 5G change the way you consume data, communicate with family, relatives and friends? How would 5G help, impact or even affect your work?

5G in Singapore is arriving in a few years time, the groundwork and infrastructure are being prepared and it’s building up speed and momentum.

5G in Singapore by year 2020, maybe it might even be earlier?

Touche – World’s 1st Biometric Loyalty & Payment Solution

Imagine one day in the very near future, you are out dining with your friends, having a great time at the restaurant, awesome food, drinks and company. At the end of dinner gathering, you called for the bill.

The staff at the restaurant asked “Would you like to pay for the bill just by the touche of your fingers?”. You replied, “Yes, sure!” The staff brings out a small tablet device, showing you the total bill to confirm that it is verified and correct before you place your fingers to process the payment. The next moment, you received an email informing you of your confirmed bill payment at the restaurant.

Is this possible? Yes, it is now possible, a fintech product made in Singapore, making her debut and official appearance recently and I had the opportunity to view it for the first time and had a short hands on experience on the process and payment, from a customer perspective.

Let me introduce Touche, the world’s full fledged biometric loyalty and payment solution platform –

“ … Touché is proud to present the world’s first biometric loyalty and payment platform, which is activated by just your fingers. In Singapore, within a span of three months, 150 restaurants, 15 local hotels and 5 private social clubs have shown interest in implementing this solution. The homegrown company aims to foray into Japan, with a market size in excess of US$200 million.

“Touché is a world first. It is not a better mousetrap, but a brand-new idea,” says Sahba Saint-Claire, CEO of Touché. “At its core, it aims to make people’s lives easier by removing the need to carry things such as credit cards, loyalty and membership cards, vouchers, coupons, etc. while ensuring they get all the benefits to which they are entitled. You register on Touché once at anywhere that offers the service and you can use it globally.” … “ 

(Via Press Release information)

I would like to share some of my personal views from both sides, an end user/customer and a business perspective

For end user/customer

This Touche biometric loyalty and payment platform is probably going towards a boom and rise in convenient, fast cashless and card-less payment system in the near future. With the proposed integration of loyalty rewards program in the near future, the customer payment and rewards experience would be enhanced in this area in the future (in my personal humble opinion).

Security and privacy are definitely concerns by the end users/customers when using the Touche platform. I had these questions at the back of my mind too when I attended their presentation. From their presentation, I am satisfied and glad to hear from them on the aspects of security and privacy procedures in place for the Touche platform.

For a business entity

I worked in the retail and hospitality industries previously, therefore, I had the experiences of the payment system commonly used, the machines for the electronic funds payment e.g. NETS, VISA, MasterCard, Diners, AMEX, JCB. I understood and knew about the costs involved in those machines.

While I do not have the costs and numbers from the business operation side of the Touche system, my personal view is that adopting the Touche platform device is definitely a worthy consideration, not just in terms of cost savings, there would be time savings (e.g. from the service staff printing out the bill, brining it to you, take your credit card, process the payment and back to you for your signature) and administrative time (change the roll of paper, change the ink cartridge)

The integration of this fintech with the entity’s own loyalty/reward system might be a good stepping stone for growing customer relationship management system, rewards and loyalty points system.

If you are in the hotel, hospitality, food and beverage industries, take a look at the Touche platform, have a chat with them.

The following information below were provided via the press release information, that explained my thoughts on Touche –

Efficient Loyalty and Payment through A Simple Device, Made in Singapore

Made in Singapore, the hardware of Touché is an elegant rectangular device that is certified and capable of multiple payment options including a magnetic stripe reader, chip reader, and 2.2-inch (diagonal measurement) biometric sensor with the highest resolution in the market to detect two fingers for efficient payments. Most customers will choose to pay with just two fingers after a simple registration, but they may also choose to pay with their physical credit cards. The device works over a Wi-Fi or 3G connection.

Convenience is key

You will no longer need to carry anything around when shopping — this includes your cards, phones, vouchers or wallets! Look forward to fast transactions, as there is no need to look for your payment or loyalty cards, count dollar notes or wait for paper receipts and signatures to be processed. Imagine checking your bill on the device, placing your fingers on the Touché device and you’re out of the restaurant in just a few minutes. You will then receive an email detailing your experience. No more paper!

Security is at the core of Touché

The company’s brainchild scans any two of your fingers to extract around 40 to 45 specific points of each fingerprint. It does not store images of your fingerprints. The information is encrypted on a cloud system. It is virtually impossible to create a replica of your fingerprints with this information. The anti-spoofing and live detection technology at Touché also ensures that the fingerprints are real. Credit card information is tokenised, and the card details are not stored in the database. No information is stored on the device, and it communicates with the server using the highest encryption levels to protect our users’ privacy.

With one simple registration, users can use the system globally

The first time you visit a merchant, you can pay with your credit card and use Touché’s solution to link the card to your fingers. You then update your particulars online, and even add your profile picture! For subsequent visits to any merchant that uses Touché, there is no need for further registration, and you can even choose between multiple credit cards in your Touché wallet to make payment.

Smart shopping and increased savings with Touché

The Touché wallet offers you more than just payment methods. Wherever you go, your favourite offers, loyalty programmes, vouchers, coupons and memberships follow. Access to your shopping or dining experiences and expenditure history is readily available via the Touché journal. Touché ensures that your entitlements are applied automatically at every interaction. You will also be notified of the loyalty benefits or credit card promotional offers at one glance, making it easier for you to choose your preferred payment method for greater savings.

Supercharging businesses with a gentle touch

For businesses, this platform is time saving and efficient. It adapts to existing technology and process environments, so integration is a cinch. It can be utilised to create long-term relationships with their customers. They can tailor loyalty programmes and create unique offers for different customers. Businesses can also curate data about their customers, and the insights can be used to create moments that wow at every turn.

(Press Release Information)

Personally, in my personal humble opinion, I believe this Touche platform has a huge growth and expansion potential in the whole world. If the opportunity arises in the future, I hope that I can write and share more on both sides of the story, customer/end user and business.

I would like to thank Touche and Brand Cellar for the invitation to Touche launch event in Singapore.

* Photos and information courtesy of Touche and Brand Cellar *