Artificial intelligence (AI) will bring order to a world in which by 2020, 50 billion connected devices are expected to come online, all generating an unprecedented volume of data. How will we stay afloat in this flood of data? AI is throwing us a collective life raft, in the form of algorithms capable of parsing a huge quantity of information that would otherwise be lost.
Combined with ultra-high speed networks and quantum computing, AI will deliver tremendous benefits to society, improving the economy and quality of life. As AI takes center stage in breakthrough areas such as self-driving cars and medical treatments, not to mention smart communities, ensuring the responsible use of networks will be essential. This is where the information and communications technology (ICT) industry will play a major role.
AI is poised to help telecom carriers deliver the “fourth industrial revolution.” By allowing networks to respond to constantly evolving conditions, AI will help operators maximize the potential of 5G and IoT networks. Together with software defined networks (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV), AI will enable digital transformation. Already, AI is helping diagnose up to 70 percent of network faults before an incident occurs. SDN and NFV will allow networks to carry much more and diverse traffic, and will give providers the ability to collaborate to offer more sophisticated services, bundles of services and mashups. This will allow customers and operators to interact with the network in entirely new ways.
However, SDN and NFV present a management adaptation challenge, because people will be unable to understand such a large and complex system. This is where AI comes into play. Self-optimizing network (SON) technology, for example, is advancing management, optimization and healing of mobile radio access networks.
In addition to transforming networks themselves, AI and machine learning advances will radically change the usage of telecom networks. Advances in smart buildings and self-driving cars will hinge on analytics drawn from data in videos. Video traffic is expected to represent 80 percent of all internet traffic in 2019, presenting both challenges and opportunities for the telecom industry.
Telecom companies will need to meet the growing demand for more video and at a higher quality. Fortunately, as AI introduces challenges, it also offers solutions. To accommodate the video demands brought about by AI, telecom firms will need to implement AI and machine learning to optimize and automate their networks. Network management requires products that help manage the systems themselves.
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