GITEX Technology Week & GITEX Future Stars 2018 to showcase the digital world of tomorrow

Press Release

GITEX Technology Week & GITEX Future Stars 2018 to showcase the digital world of tomorrow

22 Sep 2018

GITEX Technology Week & GITEX Future Stars 2018 to throw open the door to the digital world of tomorrow

​Visitors to GITEX Technology Week & GITEX Future Stars will get a glimpse into the digital tech fuelling the human, economic and cultural development of our industries, cities and way of life​

GITEX Technology Week & GITEX Future Stars are ready to throw open the door to the future as the 2018 editions of the mammoth global tech events gear-up to offer a hands-on exploration of the digital tech set to transform how we live.

From emergency-service rescue robots, through VR for the workplace, to the intelli-tech allowing entire cities to be run by Artificial Intelligence (AI), GITEX Technology Week – taking place at the Dubai World Trade Centre, October 14-18 – is inviting visitors to ‘Experience Future Urbanism’ at a show buzzing with the unveiling of both cutting edge soft and hardware which developers say will realign everything we know about travel, work and play.

The five-day tech summit is held side by side with GITEX Future Stars (October 14-17); the MENA region’s hottest platform for bringing award-winning ‘techpreneurs’ to investors, where over 850 international startups will have the chance to meet more than 1,500 investors and corporate buyers. Think products that are beyond reality: AI that can interpret emotion through voice (Empath Inc) or predict fashion trends (Stylumia); a wearable, real-time translation earpiece (Timekettle); or even Healthcare firm Bioniks, who have amalgamated robotics and 3D printing to create Iron Man style prosthetics. Developers of space tech will also be involved, shooting for the stars in the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre’s Innovation Cup – one of four industry-sponsored Innovation Cups.

With 5,000+ firms from more than 100 countries exhibiting over 1.4 million square feet of floor space, GITEX Technology Week and GITEX Future Stars will welcome more than 100,000 visitors when they get underway next month. The Middle East and Africa’s biggest and boldest technology and startup events, the shows will offer unrivalled networking and partnership building opportunities with the developers of life-changing digital tech, serving a regional IT market projected to be worth $155 billion this year alone.

Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice-President Events Management at the Dubai World Trade Centre, said: “Advances in digital, communication, and even biological technologies aren’t just transforming the way we interact with each other, they are fundamentally shaping how we experience the city around us.

“This year, under the theme of ‘Experience Future Urbanism’, GITEX Technology Week will showcase how new innovations and solutions can enrich the level of human, economic and cultural development of our world, both individually and collectively.”

Big names unboxing game-changing tech

As part of its world-renowned conference programme, GITEX Technology Week will host leading creative experts from industry heavyweights including Twitter, Alibaba, Amazon and LEGO, with a keynote from Cassie Kozyrkov, Google’s Chief Decision Scientist. With more than 100 other forward-looking industry practitioners, the agenda will unbox the digital, cloud and blockchain resources already shaping new frontiers in workplace productivity, industry competitiveness and service-integrated living, over a week-long seminar schedule catering to eight different verticals.

New for 2018: MENA’s biggest ever AI gathering

Artificial Intelligence will take centre stage at GITEX Technology Week 2018, with more than 100 companies from over 25 countries showcasing AI-led tech – an almost 50% increase on 2017. Visitors will be able to experience innovations from Dubai Police, Smart Dubai, Etisalat and Microsoft – already key players in a market forecasted to be worth $1.4 billion by 20252 – at the MENA region’s biggest ever AI gathering. SAP will use the show as a launchpad for its ‘Future of Intelligent Living’ suite that incorporates AI, Predictive Analytics, Machine Learning and IoT (Internet of Things); while Japanese giant, Fujitsu, will have an exclusive reveal of their latest AI offering.

Leading discussion on the subject will be Wanli Min, Chief Machine Intelligence Scientist at Alibaba, who will dissect how his incredible City Brainsoftware made Hangzhou, China, the world’s first city to manage its entire public service delivery through AI – a system that has since reduced traffic wait time by 15% and can allow emergency responders to react within one second of an accident taking place.

Other key speakers include Amazon’s Vice President for Global Innovation Policy and Communications, Paul Misener. As Amazon has grown from a startup to what it is today, it has maintained its core principles and ability to innovate and, relatedly, its willingness to experiment and to fail. An Amazon VP for over 18 years, Paul will cite examples to illustrate how the company has sustained customer-focused innovation and will offer ways in which other organizations can try Amazon’s methods for innovation.

In total, GITEX will host more than 50 targeted AI seminars, lasting 30+ hours.

Verticals exploring tech in different key industries

GITEX Technology Week’s eight conference verticals – Smart Cities, Retail, Energy, Finance, Digital Marketing, Mobility & Logistics, Education and Healthcare – will challenge and examine how tech is transforming both industry and our way of living.

On the Financial track, the growing hype around blockchain technology will be put under the spotlight by institutions including DBS Bank Singapore, Royal Bank of Canada, Emirates NBD, Ripple and the US Futures and Trading Commission, who will all challenge the status quo and share case-studies reshaping fintech. Experts behind the world’s first blockchain trade, cybersecurity and medical insurance platforms will also be speaking. A day of Digital Marketing discussion will explore many awe-inspiring case studies presented by industry protagonists; including, how to make your brand YouTube’s most popular, and how to boost your revenues by 4x in today’s crowded, content-rich media landscape – courtesy of speakers from LEGO and The Economist, respectively.

When it comes to Immersive Tech, GITEX Technology Week will change the way visitors view the world with its live interactive section. The Virtual Realitygaming industry alone is expected to be worth $4.4 billion by 2022, with this technology set to be the GCC’s next billion-dollar industry3. From VR headsets, to AR tools used in live surgery, GITEX exhibitors will demonstrate how a new view of reality can change lives and businesses.

Favourable government initiatives towards energy efficiency, a resurgent construction sector, and the rise of IoT will turn the Middle East smart home market into a US$1.86 billion dollar industry by 20224. This year’s GITEX will see a renewed focus on Smart Home and Smart Workplace as we find ourselves on the brink of an era where connectivity, efficiencies and cost savings are essential to meet the demands of tomorrow. In line with that, the MENA-region will invest $50billion in 5G infrastructure by 20215, opening the doors for smart mobility businesses to enter the game. Etisalat, du and Saudi Telecom Company will shine a light on the powerful potential of 5G through live trials and real-world examples, while Huawei will both unveil its own AI strategy and host GITEX’s first ever 5G ecosystem conference, demonstrating how 5G stands at the crux of enabling everything that Dubai wants to do – from smart cities to driverless cars.​

GITEX Future Stars, where even outer space is in reach – plus a prize pool of more than 1,000,000AED

GITEX Future Stars 2018 will feature its most stellar line-up of conference speakers to date, covering three verticals: digital marketing, smart cities and finance. For the former, brands including Reddit (Joe Federer, Brand Strategy) and Sherpa (Xabi Uribe-Etxebarria) – renowned in the digital age for their global disruption tact – are sending their finest digital marketers to host masterclasses on standing-out in a day and age where audiences demand an integrated digital experience, with ten different seminars covering topics related to multi-platform marketing across mobile, web, wearables, AI and machine learning.

Championing and nurturing the indomitable spirit of enterprise, GITEX Future Stars will feature the GITEX Supernova Challenge, where a prize pool of US$180,000 will be up for grabs for startups. The event’s annual Innovation Cups are international competitions run by government and industry leaders from Accenture, Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM,) the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) and King’s College Hospital, London, which ask startups to come up with new technologies and ideas to meet the challenges posed by the government and corporate entities, giving them the opportunity to win cash prizes and a range of other incentives.

Perhaps the most exciting of these, the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) Space Innovation Challenge, will signal lift-off for the startup that has developed the most impressive tech innovation for space travel and exploration. With entrants given the chance to bag a MoU with MBRSC – plus the opportunity to collaborate on future UAE government space projects and up to $30,000 cash – expect out-of-this-world ideas in GITEX’s own space race.

MUTEK.AE leading a revolution in music

In a show first, GITEX Future Stars will host MICRO MUTEK.AE – Dubai’s second ever edition of the ground-breaking international electronic music festival. Forming part of the show’s Creative Economy Programme, MICRO MUTEK.AE will feature a sophisticated selection of the world’s most avant-garde live audio-visual artists, illustrating through live performances held across the show floor how the intersection of music, art and innovative technology can push the envelope of contemporary music and creativity into entirely new dimensions.

Mehdi Ansari, Co-Founder of MUTEK.AE, explained: “The Middle East is demanding access to digital creativity, specifically audiovisual content, which is the commitment and focus of our second annual gathering. The chemistry between MUTEK.AE and GFS is incredibly powerful and allows us to infuse the technology startup scene with innovative digital artistry, which is a growing trend within the international contemporary music scene.”

The hottest place to meet startups and share knowledge

GITEX Future Stars will also be home to 10X Space, where world-class names in business, technology and entrepreneurship will share advice in the form of keynotes, fireside chats and mentorship clinics. A Meetings Programme tied together with a Corporate Buyer Programme will drive collaboration between startups and large corporate institutions.

Additionally, this year’s show will host provocative and powerful keynotes from young C-level executives and millennials who are out to conquer the world with their ideas. X-Labs will be spotlighting awe-inspiring innovations, and Tech Talks will be focusing on the latest tech trends across keystone industries.

Alaa ElShimy, Vice President & Managing Director, Huawei Enterprise Middle East, said: “Our digital landscape is transforming. Innovations in 5G, Artificial Intelligence, and Smart Cities are revolutionizing how governments, businesses, and consumers interact with the world around them.

“Every year, we look forward to GITEX as a unique opportunity to meet in person with the region’s prominent leaders and industry experts and exchange ideas on how to successfully ride the wave of digitalisation. In the spirit of openness and sharing wisdom, we hope the event will act as a platform for leaders and luminaries to discuss how organisations across the Middle East can work together to embrace digital transformation, create a 5G ecosystem, and forge ahead on the road to an intelligent world.”

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