The future of ‘Smart’ everything – leveraging digital technology to do just about anything more efficiently – is inextricably linked to our ability to ‘connect’ via the internet. ‘Smart’ anything and ‘Smart’ everything will depend on a frenzied exchange of data with, within and between people, entities, things and machines.
The actual connection required for this exchange – in terms of speed and accessibility – will be as critical as available and adequate bandwidth is, or we risk losing out on the next wave of the internet. The Fourth Industrial Revolution is what the gurus the world over are calling this next wave.
The first wave of the internet was connecting people to data via the world wide web in the 1990s; the next wave was about connecting people to people, via email, Facebook and Twitter in the 2000s; and now we’re connecting people to ‘things’ and ‘things to things’ without people necessarily getting involved in the transaction. The technology industry calls this part of the wave ‘the Internet of Things’ or, more dryly, ‘machine to machine’ communications. But this is just one of the prominent use cases in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Some of the other use cases currently leading the charge are artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR) and the smart city concept.
We’ve all heard that the potential applications are endless: exchanging speed and proximity data, cars could automatically avoid or moderate collisions; a wrist-worn heat monitor could continuously communicate with your doctor’s system, only alerting you and your doctor if needed; a farm irrigation control system could communicate with a local weather station to automatically save water prior to a rain event. In addition, local capabilities such as e-Government, health, education, security, agriculture, municipal management and other sectors, will play a major role in delivering efficiency and efficacy into the system, and streamlining the processes and parameters required to allow us as a country to grow and compete in a hyper-connected world. Even closer to home, or in your house rather, modern conveniences such as access control, security, nanny cams, smart appliances, entertainment, information, education and real-time utility monitoring can all easily be taken to new heights. This, of course, will need a fast, reliable medium of connectivity to the internet.
Perhaps by virtue of our longevity in this game, Openserve is well placed to seamlessly connect you to your world. As the backbone of connectivity in South Africa, we believe that a certain onus is on us to ensure that any technology trend, when fully realised, will include, benefit and serve all South Africans in every nook and cranny of our country.
Openserve takes a forward-thinking approach to enable future-focused technologies to not only be viable, but to thrive within the South African environment by future-proofing the country’s infrastructure through building capabilities that can handle the ever-increasing data volumes.
We’re consistently looking for technology and methodology to make connectivity accessible to everyone, to bridge the digital divide sooner, and bring more of our communities into the first economy.
At the moment, Openserve’s network comprises a redundant submarine fibre ring around the African continent with connectivity into Europe, Asia and the Americas, dual robust terrestrial fibre routes into our neighbouring countries, and the most extensive domestic fibre deployment within our borders – some 150,000 fibre kilometres and growing – connecting all metros and towns in the country. This undoubtedly places us as the most experienced fibre infrastructure player in South Africa with the skills and depth of expertise to connect you to your complex, community, country and the world.
Your digital future and connectivity are inextricably linked, and form two sides of the same coin. You simply cannot have one without the other, so ask your ISP about fibre access from Openserve, and discover what a digital future has in store for you.