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Huawei: rethinking approaches to networks and computing is critical

Comms tech giant Huawei kicks off 20th Global Analyst Summit affirming commitment to connectivity, computing, storage and cloud and how strategic objectives of industry should drive digital transformation

Despite the bans on its equipment in national comms infrastructures in western government biting its bottom line, Huawei opened its 20th annual Global Analyst Summit (HAS) with an air of optimism regarding the industries its serves, maintaining its investment in connectivity, computing, storage and cloud to build the digital infrastructure that will support increasingly diverse and complex industrial scenarios.

The summit in Shenzhen aimed to discuss and plot the outline present and future of the ICT industry, including development strategies, roadmaps for digital transformation and future industry trends.

It began with Huawei deputy chairperson, rotating chair and CFO Sabrina Meng stating that Huawei had a clear aim to “provide customers with digital infrastructure that had the simplest possible architecture with the highest possible quality – that delivers the best possible experience at the lowest possible costs”.

The key is digitisation, whicht she described as a “blue ocean for the whole industry”, and that the company’s goal would be to help organisations go digital in four stages: digitising operations, building digital platforms, enabling platform-based intelligence, and putting intelligence to use.

On the road to digital transformation, Meng stressed that strategy was essential as digital transformation is essentially about strategic planning and strategic choices.

“Any successful digital transformation has to be driven by strategy, not technology. Secondly, data is the foundation,” she said. “Data only creates value when it flows across an organisation, so methodical data governance is key. Integrating data across different dimensions will create even greater value.

“Thirdly, intelligence is the destination. Data is redefining productivity. Digitising operations and building digital platforms helps clean, visualise and aggregate data, laying the foundation for digital transformation. Putting intelligence to use makes data on-demand, easier to understand, and actionable, taking digital transformation to the next level.

“Going digital has to align with an organisation’s strategic direction – help realise its strategic vision and predefined business goals. During the digitisation process, organisations will inevitably start incorporating new tools and technologies into their business, but these are only a means to an end.”

Zhou Hong, president of Huawei’s Institute of Strategic Research, said there was more to do, especially regarding the fundamentals of the network. Sharing Huawei’s hypotheses and visions for a future intelligent world, detailing how to transform experience into structured knowledge and lay the foundation for intelligence, he observed that rethinking approaches to networks and computing is critical as knowledge workers move towards an intelligent world.

“Communications networks are the foundation of the intelligent world. We must continue breaking through bottlenecks in existing theory and technology. This is the only way forward,” he said.

“In networking, we have what it takes to move beyond the limits of Shannon’s theorems – as well as applications of his theory – to drive a 100-fold increase in network capabilities over the next decade.

“In computing, we will move towards new models, architectures and components, and improve our ability to both understand and control intelligence. We will also continue to explore the use of AI for industry applications, science and more.”

The two keynotes were followed by a panel discussion on the role that digital productivity plays in driving industry digitalisation, the challenges industries face in their digitisation process, recommended actions, and expectations for industries in the process of building up their digital productivity.

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