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Etisalat successfully concluded its participation at GITEX Technology Week 2018 taking visitors on a journey of the future with a showcase of digital innovations and solutions for consumers and businesses across zones focusing on 5G, retail, healthcare, education, smart living, IoT and a unique 3D showcase of the upcoming 'Expo 2020 Dubai'.

The event also witnessed strategic partnerships of Etisalat with government entities like Ajman Municipality, Fujairah Department of Public Works, Sharjah Municipality, Ras Al Khaimah Municipality, Umm Al Quwain municipality and Shurooq.

Dr Ahmed Bin Ali, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communication, Etisalat Group said: “Etisalat has always enthralled visitors at GITEX Technology Week with the unique global innovations we get on our stand every year. The showcases were unique as there was something new to learn, experience and witness in every zone. With the theme focused on 'Leading the 5G revolution' our every showcase was about how 5G can make these digital innovations a reality and become part of our lives.

“Our main focus was on highlighting 'Driving the Digital Future to Empower societies' which is why every zone gathered the best in technology to take the visitors on this digital journey. We look forward to bringing more of such innovations and solutions next year and attract more visitors to the event from across the world.”

'Making 5G a reality'
The 5G future was about ultra-high speed and low latency, GITEX invitees were able to experience the 'download time' difference between the two technologies by downloading a 4K HD movie/video using 4G and 5G simultaneously.

With live 5G experience, the future of mobility was on showcase with the world's first flying car Pop.Up Next making its first global presence on the Etisalat stand. Visitors were able to download a video (more than 1GB) with download time taking only 13 seconds as opposed to 4G, which takes approximately 2 minutes.

The download progress was displayed on the screen to show the time taken to download the file on each technology. Visitors had a chance to observe the time taken to download a large size file on 4G and 5G concurrently.

Etisalat launches 'Future Now' scale-up program
Etisalat Digital introduced its innovation program, Future Now, at GITEX Future Stars 2018. Future Now introduces new ways of innovating and collaborating with startups, IoT developers, government entities, enterprises, and their end users. Future Now has four key pillars: Scale-ups program, a Co-creation Lab, an IoT partner ecosystem and an Innovation Center.

World's First flying car & Autonomous transportation
This year at GITEX, Etisalat also had a special showcase on the future of mobility, which is the best use case for 5G. The arrival of 5G technology will allow faster data transmissions and will prove to be game changing for the autonomous industry. The flying car “Pop.Up Next” is for the first time made its presence outside Europe, it is the first fully electric and zero-emission modular system bringing together road mobility and air transport.

It combines the flexibility of a small two-seater ground vehicle with the freedom and speed of a vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) air vehicle, thus bridging the automotive and aerospace domains. This was developed by ItalDesign, a first fully electric and zero-emission modular system designed to help resolve traffic congestion in large urban areas. The passenger cabin attached to either a car module (provided by Audi) or a flight module (manufactured by Airbus), can cruise autonomously on the road and lift into the air vertically. Both modules are entirely electric ad autonomous.

The Etisalat stand also displayed a self-driving vehicle, the 'Oasis', which is a concept car from Swiss think tank and mobility lab Rinspeed. Designed to demonstrate a less conventional method of transport for the future, the 'Oasis' has a huge glass windscreen area, fitted with augmented reality technology that lets the driver virtually 'place' displays and objects on the screen. The car has a solar panel on the roof, while the interior offers a new living space complete with armchairs, a sideboard, TV, and a multi-functional steering wheel, emphasising the car's main role as an autonomous vehicle.

Etisalat and Expo 2020 Dubai
Etisalat Digital and Accenture developed an interactive 3D flythrough experience of what the Expo 2020 Dubai site will look like in two years' time called 'Explore 2020' which was unveiled at the Etisalat booth.

Unveiled less than a week before Expo's two-years-to-go milestone, the 3D environment has rendered in real time, was displayed across eight curved screens at a resolution of 8640 x 1920. Visitors to GITEX for the first time experienced a 'fly through' and were able to navigate the Expo 2020 Dubai site due to Accenture and Etisalat Digital's design, development and optimization effort.

Retail zone highlights the future of shopping
GITEX invitees witnessed seamless shopping experience through face recognition, artificial intelligence - imagery recognition and computer vision technologies.  Etisalat joined forces with 12 technology partners for store analytics and insights, combining its capabilities to connect data and gain practical learnings that they can share with its customers and the retail community.

Some of the unprecedented retail shopping experiences featured at Etisalat's stand included a self-driving grocery store, robotic shopping cart that leads visitors to the grocery isle, a smart dressing room that recommends fashion apparel, a smart vending machine, a state-of-the-art unmanned cash counters and self-checkouts.

This year visitors witnessed world's first self-driving grocery store, 'Robomart' which has taken the idea of grocery delivery to a new level. Just tap a button and the entire store comes to you so that you can shop checkout free for the freshest goods right at your doorstep. 'Robomarts' are fully electric road vehicles engineered with cutting-edge technology, including driverless tech for autonomy, tele-operations for safety, a check-out free system, and a purpose-built refrigeration for cooling.

Etisalat's new autonomous retail solution was also a highlight which used technologies such as AI and computer vision, which can detect products taken or returned to the shelves and keeps track of them in your virtual cart. This was showcased for the first time globally, it has no cash registers, as customers can simply pick out what they fancy and walk out. Shoppers no longer have to wait in line at the till - they enter, take the product that they want and leave.

Future of Healthcare & Pharmacy
RoboPharmacy was a unique showcase of an unmanned, futuristic pharmacy system. It helps the hospital and pharmacy to capture the data to provide convenience to the customer through virtual futuristic technologies.

Another revolutionary showcase is the CAE Vimedix ultrasound simulator, a high-fidelity simulator designed to make learning more engaging and intuitive. The unique system features a mannequin, several simulated ultrasound probes and an expanding library of cases.

SharpSurgeon, a VR spine surgery simulator and training brought a new perspective to classical medical education methods. Augmented reality showed how medical education can be revolutionised and a human body was brought to life in full 3D in front of you using the AR functionality of Apple iPad.

Visitors also checked out 'Haptic Ultrasound', a robot-based application that represents a potential application in which a sensitive robot can assist a physician.

'Classroom Re-imagined'
The future of education was exhibited with Apple's Distinguished Educators and Apple Professional Learning Specialists, visitors were able to use iPads throughout this learning journey at Etisalat stand.

Etisalat Digital also offered an immersive classroom experience in collaboration with CENTURY Tech, a cloud-based education platform. The experience combines AI, cognitive neuroscience theories of how the brain learns and big data showcased in a traditional classroom setting. The methods demonstrated are flipped learning, blended learning, big data insights, AI recommendations and live interventions.

An end-to-end digital transformation solution for any educational entity was highlighted - from infrastructure and connectivity, through devices, learning platforms, high quality digital content right up to teacher training and professional development. Solutions can be provided as a turn-key solution or as a service to reduce complexity and ease implementation.