OPPO INNO DAY Live. Photo: screenshot

“Intelligent connectivity is enabled through the collaboration of AI, connectivity (including 5G), cloud and edge and IoT,” according to the IHS Markit’s Intelligent Connectivity white paper released at the OPPO INNO DAY event on December 10 in Shenzhen, China.

The white paper points out that all these ever-evolving AI, 5G and so on technologies need to work together to create immersive experiences other than creating a number of separate devices for consumers.

Tom Morrod, Research Executive Director of IHS Markit, said at OPPO INNO DAY that Intelligent Connectivity is not about a single product or device, but a very complicated ecosystem and many companies involved. Therefore, openness and exchanges across industries are needed.

Tony Chen, the OPPO Founder and CEO, also expressed similar thoughts in his opening speech in Mandarin: “OPPO is no longer just about smartphones, but will definitely not do whole-scenario businesses. First of all, we do not have the capabilities to do all things. Secondly, we need to do what we ought to do and don’t do what we should not.

“The link of all things remains technological and physical. Only the integration of all things is the future and the trend. Integration is deeper than link.”

As stated in IHS Markit’s white paper, AI is a pivotal enabler of intelligent connectivity, however currently in its infancy, and human beings are just into the so-called “narrow” or “weak AI” today.

As for whether to deploy AI in the could or at the edge, many real-life applications and use cases opt for a hybrid cloud-edge approach.

“Not all the AI needs to be concentrated in the cloud as some of the orders need to be made as quickly as possible. For example, automotive driving needs the AI to be deployed very close to devices, namely cars,” said Morrod.

5G, another enabler of intelligent connectivity, has gone through a rapid growth this year.

“It’s a 5G world, already. The year 2019 has witnessed the first wave of standards-based 5G commercial launches. 5G may be in its infancy, but the development of the 5G device ecosystem has been ramping quickly,” cites the white paper.

According to the Global Mobile Suppliers’ Association, 50 operators had launched 3GPP-compliant 5G commercial services across 27 countries; 328 operators in 109 countries were investing in 5G.

The white paper specially mentioned China’s 5G deployments. China’s three giant mobile operators China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, had officially launched commercial 5G services ahead of schedule early this November.

IHS Markit expects that by year-end these three Chinese operators will deploy some 100,000 5G base stations and 5G is set to be available in 50 cities across China. The figure is expected to rise to one million in 2020.

Last but not least, smartphones play a key role in humans’ intellectual connectivity lives. In IHS Markit’s view, the rise of many digital assistants, such as Amazon Alexa, has not demised smartphones.

The basic functions of smartphones are expected to be improved continuously and comprehensively to continue to strengthen its key role in the 5G and the IoT ecosystem.

This article was written by Huang Wanyi in Chinese for ATimesCN.com. Huang also wrote the English version.

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