Davos 2020: Unmanned Life CEO speaks on 5G and Autonomy-as-a-Service

Kumardev Chatterjee, Unmanned Life CEO

I’ve just returned from an exhilarating week at Davos, during the 50th Anniversary of the World Economic Forum, where I attended under my various hats, including that of a World Economic Forum Expert on Entrepreneurship since 2013, European Commission appointed Expert on various Tech and Innovation topics, Co-Founder and Chairman of the European Young Innovators Forum, and Co-Founder and CEO of Unmanned Life. This was also the first year that I attended after being inducted into the prestigious Progress1000 List of Most influential people in London, as the 3rd most influential person in technology: engineering .

Davos is known for bringing together thousands of the most innovative leaders from around the globe to thrash out solutions to the world’s most pressing problems – and Davos 2020 didn’t disappoint. With new technologies driving Industry 4.0 under increasing scrutiny, the week provided the opportunity to debate the most crucial governance priorities from a range of perspectives. I also shared ideas on how to unlock the potential of 5G technology – which some economists estimate will create $13.2 trillion in global economic value within two decades.

Davos week is usually very intense for me with a broad range of meetings, speaking slots, panel discussions and of-course, networking both at corporate receptions and the piano bar till late at night. This year was no different, my meetings ranged from high-level private round-tables at Chalets and the Hotel Schatzalp, to side-events – corporate meetings and receptions organised by United Nations (UN SDG Tent), Tata Consultancy Services (TCS Dome), Wall Street Journal (Journal House), Forbes (Belvedere).

I was deeply honoured to be invited by N. Chandrasekharan , Chairman of the USD 100 Billion Tata Group, as one of the 250 Global Leaders including Satya Nadella, to the launch of his seminal tome, “Bridge Digital Nation” at the TCS Dome in Davos.

Apart from that, other inspiring and productive meetings were with Jyrki Katainen, ex-European Union Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness from 2014 until 2019,  at the UN SDG event, where we discussed the role of 5G, AI and Autonomy for jobs and SDG goals in the autonomous economy; Mark Thompson, ex-Director General of the BBC and current Chief Executive Officer of The New York Times ; Honourable Kamal Nath, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, senior leader of the Indian National Congress, where he has served as India’s Minister of Urban Development and one of the longest serving and most senior members of the Indian Parliament; and with Astro Teller, Google X’s Captain of Moonshots, where the discussion was about how Unmanned Life could collaborate with Google X.

In the year that technology is poised to disrupt every area of our lives, the new Davos manifesto was launched –  a set of ethical principles for companies in the age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It was thrilling to take part in world class intellectual exchanges on the opportunities and ethical dilemmas presented by the new era of intelligent robotics, high-speed connectivity and advanced autonomy.

In this context Unmanned Life’s work is now more relevant than ever. I spoke on 5G and Autonomy-as-a-Service –  both pivotal to the emerging autonomous, hyperconnected, economy.

The world’s first 5G Autonomy-as-a-Service platform, our software enables autonomous services for both Industry 4.0 and Smart Cities. It can scale – without limits – in deploying swarms of robots to improve emergency operations, surveillance, public safety and transport fleet management – generating unprecedented economic, social and environmental benefits. Unmanned Life’s goal is to be the default global 5G Autonomy-as-a-Service platform for telco operators deploying 5G Services for Industry 4.0 and Governments deploying 5G Smart Cities services for citizens.

For instance, our platform can reduce costs, save lives and minimise risks to workers when implemented in emergency response operations in Smart Cities. In collaboration with Verizon and Nokia, we’ve already deployed the world’s first fully autonomous multi-drone swarm to assist rescue teams. Each drone autonomously performed a different task, from surveillance through a live video feed, to filming the rescue site in real time, to dropping emergency supplies. Just in the Q4 of 2019, the company has been chosen by the City of Vienna to build the world’s first 5G Autonomous Fire and Rescue Emergency service using Magenta Telekom’s 5G network and by Volkswagen-SEAT to build the world’s first 5G Smart Factory using Telefonica’s 5G network.

Our multi-award-winning, 5G Autonomy-as-a-Service company is at the forefront of massive and transformative opportunities created by the rapidly increasing confluence of 5G, AI and Autonomy. Within four years, the company has built a flexible and extensible 5G standardized architecture and software platform to deploy large and flexible autonomous mixed swarms of different types of vehicles and drones working together seamlessly like autonomous robot teams for Industry 4.0 and Smart Cities use cases.

So despite the concerns and challenges around the breakneck speed of advancement in technology, I believe it can be a great leveler in decreasing inequalities by widening access to information and resources, and helping to implement globally relevant solutions to local problems. With Unmanned Life already making huge leaps in these areas – just think where we will be by Davos 2021.