It’s getting a bit passé these days to say that technology is changing the world. While there’s no question that it is, what’s more intriguing is how the pace of technological change seems to be accelerating and the profound – almost instantaneous – implications it is having on our lives.
Most of us chat with Siri, Cortana or Alexa. Someone you know drives a Tesla, is using a Fitbit, and may soon be purchasing a Jibo robot or a GoPro Karma drone. We expect and get inflight VoIP calls on WhatsApp while flying 20,000 feet above the ground, and to have an Uber car waiting curbside when we land. All these things did not exist a decade ago, yet we take them for granted.
Life is getting more digital and at a faster clip. There are impacts on our society, the environment, our well-being and the way we work. There are some emergent consequences that we can’t anticipate. Still, we see a future that’s brighter and better for the next generation because of technology’s progress. It’s a safer, more prosperous and more thrilling world. At 25 years, Aricent is not only in the thick of things, we’re getting ready take on the next blink. Every day we work with R&D organizations that are dreaming up value propositions that take advantage of cloud, IoT, software-defined everything, and new security technologies.
Aricent is well positioned to help our clients become digitally durable – To stand the test of time by designing and engineering products and services that create ongoing value.
Here is a peek into our world, where every day more than 11,000 immensely talented people are designing and engineering a digitally durable future:
Bringing open cellular to life. We’ve connected billions of people, but we have yet to connect the billions of things that will play a pivotal role in boosting economic productivity. So let’s get started. Facebook has revealed a set of open-hardware designs for cellular base stations (2G, 3G and 4G) where anyone can “customize the platform to meet their connectivity needs and set up the network of their choosing, in both rural and urban areas.” Aricent was chosen by Facebook to design this network-in-a-box including the General-Baseband Computer and other subsystems. The Telecom Infrastructure Program, which we are a member, is a game changer. At final production the Open Cellular platform will need an Internet backhaul connection and its power supply can be Solar or Power-over-Ethernet. A software-defined radio will run various types of wireless networks from 2G/GSM to LTE.
Doing the heavy lifting for autonomous networks. Carriers are spearheading the software-defined movement by trying to do the same thing that Amazon Web Services and others have done to the data center: break up the status quo. Carriers want lower operating costs, less capital spend and most importantly, service innovation. Aricent is leading the way in creating solutions for disaggregated hardware, converged IP and SDN/NFV applications. We know it takes a community so we’ve created an ecosystem of silicon vendors, network equipment makers, ODMs and open-source software and hardware companies.
Reimagining the Ride Ahead. Uber recently launched a self-driving program in Pittsburg, Google is miles ahead in self-drive cars, and Tesla recently announced it will be building long-haul, autonomous electric trucks. Wherever you turn, the prevailing wisdom is that driving oneself will become an urban legend within a generation. Aricent is at the forefront of connected vehicles on a number of fronts. We design vehicle-to-vehicle communication chips, FPGAs and boards. We are reimagining the driving experience inside and outside through strategy and design work for the largest auto OEMs in the world.
Making a science out of game testing. Worldwide gaming revenue in 2015 was $124 billion with $34 billion in console revenue. By 2018 that figure is expected to top $145 billion. One of the biggest challenges in testing games is that they are non-deterministic, meaning the outcomes will be different every time even if the gamer makes the exact same moves. That’s done on purpose to make the game play realistic. Designers use random-number generators extensively, for example, to control movements of characters, align game play paths, and control background activity. Aricent is working with one of the world’s largest software companies on analytics-driven test models that can increase productivity and cut costs during the certification and release of game titles.
Heading toward a gigabit society. 5G networks – that could be capable of speeds of 10 Gb/s, milliseconds of response time, and up to 20 years of battery life – are coming together with virtual reality and artificial intelligence, according to Turkcell’s CEO Kaan Terzioglu, in a MobileWorld Live interview. He’s spot on and the potential use-cases have yet to be imagined by creative developers and entrepreneurs. Aricent is not only working on 5G chip design, but it is paving the way for a 5G world where acronyms like LTE-U/LTE-AA, LWA, Wi-SUN and LTE-V will become reality. Whether its applications for the industrial internet, smart energy or consumer electronics, Aricent’s 25 years of expertise in wireless connectivity, mobility, and radio access networks is even more relevant today than it was in 1991. And the participants are not just net equipment providers and mobile operators, but also industrial internet companies and an array of brand new market entrants.
Solving for the security of things. Making a product resilient to hacking is getting harder. The number of moving parts leads to complexity and windows of opportunities for break-ins. The attack vectors are just too many to count: the human link, third-party wireless networks and connectivity modules, sensors that can’t defend themlseves, vintage equipment that never should have been connected in the first place, embedded systems with hastily written firmware, many, many lines of code that can be updated (and intercepted) over the air. Defending this internet of things can’t be an after-thought. Instead product makers must go “all-in” to solve for the security of things that includes hardening, dynamic vulnerability testing, validation, adaptive defense and continuous vigilance. Security is not yet a competency for most product makers but it will be a strategic asset they cannot do without. Aricent is applying its know-how in hardware and software development to help solve for the security of things. The company is working with a world-class industrial equipment manufacturer, to develop a zero-touch, over-the-air update solution for its field devices. This cutting-edge capability ensures the integrity of applications and firmware configurations.
Creating smart spaces. Imagine a school where each student wears a wristband so the teacher can record attendance, locate a student, and share homework assignments. Or wearables for toddlers so parents can keep track of them in the park, or for pets so owners know where their dogs and cats are. Maybe it’s a shipping container where each pallet has to be tracked and traced, and the contents monitored to maintain a certain temperature to reduce spoilage. Aricent is helping design low-power devices, solving for wireless interference when scaling up connections, managing cloud-based universal tracking systems and deploying embedded hardware that dramatically accelerates service innovation.
These are just some examples of the many technology innovations that Aricent has successfully delivered in just the last 24 months for our customers. I can only wonder what that will be written in 2041, when Aricent turns 50. We thank all our customers and partners that have helped Aricent achieve our quarter-century milestone and look forward to continuing our collaboration for many years into the future.