Great signs this week that Industry 4.0 is fast arriving in the Middle East with ever increasing numbers of manufacturers and service providers ready to embrace the advanced technology that will drive the region’s global competitiveness.
First came news that Saudi Arabia is to establish an artificial intelligence (AI) center to enhance the Kingdom’s drive towards innovation and digital transformation. The new National Center for Artificial Intelligence and an organization called the National Data Management Office will be linked to the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority. The move is being widely seen as a clear indication of Saudi Arabia’s determination to develop its digital capabilities and build a future based on AI and innovation. It follows moves by the UAE two years ago when the Emirates appointed its first Minister for AI.
Next came the news that SPS Middle East, the International Exhibition and Conference for Innovative Solutions in the Automation Industry, ended its second annual showing at the Dubai World Trade Centre with more than double the number of 2018 visitors. and a clear indication that Industry 4.0 has arrived in the region.
Messe Frankfurt, which organises the show said a 66% uptick in visitor numbers on only a second showing was a resounding result for any trade show and could be seen as a sure sign that the Middle East has entered the digital age with industrial transformation rising right to the top of the investment agenda. Certainly, digitalisation opportunities are now being prioritised in the Saudi Vision 2030 and the Kingdom’s National Transformation Program, in the New Kuwait 2035 Vision, Qatar’s Smart Nation Program, the strategies of Bahrain's Information & eGovernment Authority and Oman’s Digital Initiative.
Regional industries, it seems, have heeded forecasts from the IMD World Competitiveness Center, which says digital competitiveness improvements can boost the Arab region’s GDP by up to US$ 0.3 trillion annually.
But is the region’s IT infrastructure ready to seize advanced technology opportunities, particularly AI? Migration to cloud infrastructure is a recommended essential because the two are an ideal digital innovation match. AI’s cognitive capabilities thrive on huge volumes of data, which are scalable and instantly accessible in a cloud environment. Organisations that leverage AI in the cloud operates with a sharp critical advantage.
Here’s a snapshot of the benefits to be got from AI in the cloud:
Unrivaled data support and access
Data is the brain food of AI. The more data AI is fed, the smarter it gets. Cloud environments can simply support much more data volume than traditional siloes and the cloud gives you instant access to the data. A cloud environment with AI learns from the data it gathers, analyses the data to predict scenarios and can highlight trouble spots before they arise.
Next level analysis for more informed action
An organization which connects data in a cloud environment can more easily identify trends. Within a cloud environment, AI automatically learns from historical data, identifies current patterns, and makes recommendations making human analysis error a thing of the past. And the speed at which data analysis is delivered is dramatically speeded up meaning organisations can quickly respond to changing consumer demands.
Linking AI and the cloud makes good plain business sense as the cloud model lets organizations buy only the storage they need – when they need it. There’s no huge infrastructure capex and maintenance costs.
Major cloud providers are constantly rolling out new AI features which its client organizations can leverage free of charge. So, you’re always relevant!
If you’ve decided on AI solutions to transform your operations, make sure you match them to the cloud. Not sure what’s involved? Well Cobweb can help. Call us for a Discovery Workshop, we’ll get to know your business and your transformative intent and become matchmaker recommending the best application and data migration path to the cloud for your specific needs and handling the entire migration process if required.