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Here are your top ICT trends and insights: Investments continue in India; EU-backed study estimates healthy returns for 5G rollout; and top tech firms launch new Partnership on Artificial Intelligence. 


ITU Newsletter How connectivity is changing the face of migration Boutros left Syria three years ago with his most precious possession in hand: his mobile phone. Amy Rhoades explains why connectivity is so important for migrants and refugees. 

ICT Trends

AI: Google, Facebook, IBM, Amazon and Microsoft launched the Partnership on Artificial Intelligence to address ethical, privacy and security challenges related to AI. The group hopes to alleviate public concern over AI and some experts say this is part of an effort to pre-empt government regulation.

Regulation: As the European Union’s regulation drive continues with warnings for Google over Android's pre-installed software, Salesforce has urged the EU for an antitrust probe of Microsoft, saying their USD26 billion LinkedIn deal threatens competition and innovation.


Cybersecurity: Mobile devices at risk? Passwords are 2,500 times easier to steal on iOS 10 than iOS 9, claim Russian password-retrieval company Elcomsoft. And using contactless NFC-based payment systems on Android smartphones puts users at heightened risk of cyber fraud, Europol warns. 

ICT investment in India: Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is reportedly in advanced discussions to invest up to USD1 billion into India’s Flipkart, in a bid to boost competition with e-commerce giant Amazon. Moreover, Google will roll out a public WiFi platform at 100 railway stations across India, continuing its strong investment portfolio in the country.


  • Connectivity: IFC’s six-year project with satellite operator O3b Networks delivered affordable broadband access to over 10 million people in 31 landlocked and remote developing countries.  
  • Digital finance15% of ‘big’ banks will use blockchain by 2017, with roughly 65% of banks expected to have blockchain solutions in production in the next three years, according to a new IBM survey.
  • Undersea cables: Telefónica has cancelled EUR1.2 billion IPO listing of Telxius subsea cable infrastructure and telecommunications tower unit, due to weak investor demand.
  • 5G: 5G will cost EUR56 billion to deploy across the EU, but could add EUR113.1 billion and create over 2 million jobs to EU economy by 2025, new study claims.
  • Small cells: Nokia demonstrated a way to deposit wireless solar-powered small cells on rooftops using drones – is this a solution to small cell backhaul and power challenges for operators?
  • Smartphones: Shipments in Africa fell 5.2% to 23.1 million units in Q2 2016 while basic feature phones continue to rise 31.9% year-on-year to 29.8 million units. What does this imply for future development?  


AI: a good business tool? Concerns about the future of AI continue, but “if anyone can plot a positive and productive path for AI, the ITU can.” Read Dave O'Leary’s full analysis of the future of AI and ITU’s role in it. [ITU will hold a series of talks on AI at the upcoming ITU World Telecommunication Standardization AssemblyITU Telecom World and ITU Kaleidoscope academic conference.]

Silicon Valley and the next billion YouTube has reinvented its product for the next billion users. David Pierce looks at what its launch could mean and the lessons other Silicon Valley tech companies can learn from them. 

Keep up to date with ITU


- Americas Week on Digital Broadcasting and Regional Conference on Spectrum Management; Mexico City, Mexico, 10 – 14 October 2016

- ITU Seminar on Virtual Reality and 360 in Broadcasting; Geneva, Switzerland, 17 October 2016

- World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA-16); Yasmine Hammamet, Tunisia, 25 October - 3 November


- New videos! On ITU’s YouTube channel

- Read the latest ITU News Magazine here

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