Skip to Content

Sponsored

Asia’s AI Agenda: Aware, but Unprepared?

Only a small percentage of companies are currently investing in AI development in Asia.

in partnership withADP

Decision makers at Asian-based companies are firmly convinced of the benefits AI and automation technology will bring to their own prospects and the region’s economy as a whole, but most have not yet committed resources to capitalize on these beliefs.

A small percentage of respondents indicate that they have invested in AI in Asia, and nearly 20 percent say they have robotics and automation commitments in the region. Larger percentages indicate that they have AI or robotics investments at global levels, and fully half indicate that they are considering AI investments.

While multinational companies may not be committing resources to AI development in Asia yet, domestic industries across the region are most certainly doing so, driven by a traditional response of policy makers in the region, according to Tak Lo, a partner at Hong Kong-based AI accelerator Zeroth.AI. “The external shocks that can happen create risk that Asian governments feel they need to take to mitigate with technology progression,” he says.

In China, the hope is to use automation to bolster labor productivity as the country’s workforce ages and shrinks. Over the longer term, China hopes to build a domestic manufacturing capability in industrial robots and, by extension, in process automation and artificial intelligence. Singapore, by contrast “is into a little bit of everything—fintech [financial technology], autonomous driving, automated customer support,” Tak says.

Autonomous driving is considered one of the most likely AI-enabled applications, but largely as an anchor for establishing a broad-based AI innovation platform, says Zhang Yue of the Singapore University of Technology and Design. “Singapore is aligning its policy objectives across multiple sectors—urban mobility, financial data science, health care—in an effort to elicit the synergies across them and speed up AI development overall,” says Zhang, a professor and machine-language researcher.

Asia as a regional economy is poised not only to benefit greatly from advancements in AI and robotics technologies, but to also define them—and perhaps to lead their future development. AI’s rise will create a seismic shift in the processes that senior managers
use to manage talent, growth, and productivity across nearly every industry sector. Asian businesses stand to leverage AI’s rise faster, thanks to the virtuous cycle created by Asia’s technology investments and the organic growth of big data.

Next: Asia’s AI Agenda: Putting the “AI” in “Asia”

Keep Reading

Most Popular

A Roomba recorded a woman on the toilet. How did screenshots end up on Facebook?

Robot vacuum companies say your images are safe, but a sprawling global supply chain for data from our devices creates risk.

A startup says it’s begun releasing particles into the atmosphere, in an effort to tweak the climate

Make Sunsets is already attempting to earn revenue for geoengineering, a move likely to provoke widespread criticism.

10 Breakthrough Technologies 2023

Every year, we pick the 10 technologies that matter the most right now. We look for advances that will have a big impact on our lives and break down why they matter.

These exclusive satellite images show that Saudi Arabia’s sci-fi megacity is well underway

Weirdly, any recent work on The Line doesn’t show up on Google Maps. But we got the images anyway.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.