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Huawei leading the way

November 27 - December 3, 2019

Gulf Weekly Naman Arora
By Naman Arora

Gulf Weekly Huawei leading the way

Huawei celebrated its 15th anniversary of local operations in Bahrain at an event on Monday, in the presence of Shaikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Supreme Committee for Information and Communication Technology, Shaikh Khalid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister, Jawad Al Arrayed, Deputy Prime Minister, Kamal Ahmed, Minister of Transport and Telecommunications, and other ministers and senior executives.

Shaikh Mohammed highlighted the kingdom’s commitment towards digital transformation, and the important role of information and technology in developing the economy. He also acknowledged Huawei’s great contribution to Bahrain—its Middle East headquarters—which has helped support the kingdom’s leading position in the ICT field. He commended Huawei’s role in the development of technology in line with the current cooperation between the company and relevant government entities, as well as its role in training Bahraini nationals while creating various job opportunities.

During the event, Shaikh Mohammed honoured the top three national students in Bahrain who participated in Huawei’s annual global ICT competition 2019 and are qualified to participate in the regional final competition in Huawei’s international tech hub of Shenzhen, China. The competition aims to nurture talents in the ICT field and link theoretical concepts with practical applications through the latest technologies and systems provided by Huawei.

“Nurturing talented young Bahrainis and empowering them with the knowledge required to carry on their country’s digital legacy is one of our key priorities for the future,” said John Lu Yuedong, CEO of Huawei Bahrain.  “We are proud to have contributed to addressing the digital talent gap thus far, and will continue to do so with our partners.”

Charles Yang, president of Huawei Middle East, stressed the company’s continuous commitment to building an ecosystem for technology through joint projects that provide the latest technology and support the leadership’s vision, including an exhibition that displays its technology in Bahrain.  

As an industry pioneer, today Huawei is at the forefront of innovation in areas like 5G, cloud computing, and AI—technologies that have a transformative effect on societies.

5G connectivity is already being rolled out in Bahrain, with VIVA having signed a nationwide 5G partnership with the Chinese company. In parallel, those investments are enabling Artificial Intelligence (AI) products to enhance the ways citizens live, work, and interact with the world.

In August, at its flagship event, Huawei Connect, the company launched its latest AI processor – the Ascend 910 – as well as an all-scenario AI computing framework, MindSpore.

At Huawei Connect, Eric Xu, the global company’s rotating chairman said: “Ascend 910 performs much better than we expected. Without a doubt, it has more computing power than any other AI processor in the world. MindSpore will go open source in the first quarter of 2020. We want to drive broader AI adoption and help developers do what they do best.”

Ascend 910 is used for AI machine learning. In a typical training session based on ResNet-50, the combination of Ascend 910 and MindSpore is about two times faster at training AI models than other mainstream training cards using TensorFlow.

The company also showcased Smart Campus and sustainable projects, including its rainforest project.

In tropical rainforests, Huawei is working with Rainforest Connection (RFCx) to convert a huge number of used Huawei mobile phones into solar-powered devices that will monitor the rainforests. This is transforming these mobile phones into the “ears” of the rainforests. Equipped with AI, these phones are used to listen to and identify the sounds of trucks and electric saws that are illegally felling trees, helping international environmental protection organisations more efficiently protect the planet. Next year, another 6,000 square kilometers of tropical rainforests across the world will benefit from these efforts.

In Bahrain, the company has been working on Smart Airport deployments at the new terminal of the Bahrain International Airport and showcased technology to monitor and ease the flow of passengers, reducing time-on-tarmac for each flight.

Through its collaborations with partners in Bahrain, Huawei has helped accelerate the country’s digital transformation efforts in line with the long-term goals of the Economic Vision 2030, which recognises ICT as a crucial ingredient to diversifying local economies, creating future jobs, and supporting sustainable development.

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