Improving medical technology and better quality of life have led to longer average life expectancies around the world. According to a UN estimate, the average life expectancy of the global population in 2019 was 72.3 years, but may soon grow to 74.3 years in 2030. This positive trend however is an increasing strain to the healthcare systems of many countries. To maximize the utilization of progressively limited medical resources, development towards smart and precision medicine is inevitable, subsequently driving up demands for surgical navigation systems. Furthermore, even though minimally invasive surgeries are safer, require smaller incisions, and allow patients to recover in shorter period of time, its usage is limited to just some cases in neurosurgery, craniofacial surgery or ENT surgery, because the areas to operate are not accessible to the naked eye. In these cases, doctors still have to rely on traditional surgeries which require larger incisions. With the latest technology, nonetheless, it is now possible to perform minimally invasive surgeries using surgical navigation systems, which allow the surgeons to see 3D radiology images in real-time while their surgical instruments are guided by the system into the surgical site.
VNG, the first Vietnam-based unicorn that operates mobile communication App, online games, e-commerce, and cloud computing services, in 2017 signed an MoU with Nasdaq but has not yet applied for listing, this is because there is actually no rush for the company to undertake an IPO.
With the ability to immerse users and create convincing realities, extended reality (XR) has been wowing people since its introduction. Developments in recent years have not only matured the technology, but have also expanded its application from entertainment to commercial fields.
Those familiar with the medical industry have undoubtedly heard the term "precision medicine" with great frequency. As a matter of fact, the development of genome sequencing technology in recent years has advanced the treatment of infections from unknown pathogens into the realm of precision medicine. The concept behind precision pathogen detection is to identify the pathogen through bioinformatics and data science, and then using drugs or treatments that can accurately target the pathogen. Back in 2015, the Obama administration proposed to invest US$215 million to develop precision medicine in the US More recently, the UK and China have also followed suit, demonstrating that the technology has become the focus of medical R&D in most countries, and genomic sequencing is a key technology in the application of precision medicine. As a leading player in the global medical industry, Taiwan has also made considerable achievements in the field of genomic sequencing. In particular, Asia Pathogenomics' metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS) can accurately identify the pathogens from different types of patient samples to help doctors administer targeted treatment in an incredibly short amount of time.
UnaBiz, a Singapore-based Internet of Things (IoT) service provider, has raised over US$25 million in its Series B funding round led by SPARX Group. The round was oversubscribed, with participation from CDIB, G K Goh and Thaioil, according to the UnaBiz.
The recent surge of AI, 5G, and IoT technology has given rise to unprecedented levels of cyber threats that even target critical infrastructure and government. The severity of these threats has turned cybersecurity into a matter of national security for countries around the globe. To safeguard their digital assets, governments and enterprises have increasingly been investing in high IT security budgets year after year, which has led to the growth of the cybersecurity market. In fact, Gartner estimates that by 2023, the global cybersecurity market will reach US$168 billion.
Startups are the growing force of India's economy. One of India's unicorn startups launched Ola Cars online car-shopping platform, while electric vehicles (EV), especially two-wheelers, are seeing increasing sales in India.
As network infrastructures around the globe continue to mature, the declining cost of sensor components has given rise to a surge of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, which has itself become an important driving force for current global economic growth. According to research from the McKinsey Global Institute, the overall IoT market is estimated to reach US$4-11trillion by 2025. But behind the prospering business prospects lies the equally concerning problem of growing IT security threats. Currently, IoT devices have become a preferred target of hacker groups, who use them as a convenient relay to launch volumetric and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks to demand ransoms or achieve specific political objectives, posing an unprecedented threat to businesses or countries.
The 2021 Taipei Innovation Summit, organized by the Taipei Entrepreneurs Hub under the guidance of the Taipei City Government Department of Economic Development, took place from September 16-17, 2021. The summit was themed "Navigating Through Taipei's Digital Transformation" and invited startup companies to join the discussion on the two topics of financial technology and e-commerce logistics. The virtual webinar attracted 1,100 people over the summit's two-day duration.
Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in Asian countries (excluding Japan) during the first half of 2021 reached the second highest in history with a 69.6% year-on-year increase in value to US$648 billion, according to UBS citing data from Dealogic.
VNG is the first Vietnamese company ever to achieve unicorn status, with a valuation of more than $1 billion. The gaming industry leader in Vietnam has not taken any actions after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Nasdaq for pursuing an initial public offering (IPO) since 2017. Nor has it confirmed market hearsays about its plans to raise US$3 billion in a reverse merger deal in relation to a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).
As highlighted by the United Nations in 2019, there is a growing proportion of the elderly population across the world, especially in urbanized countries. This rapid increase of the elderly population exerts great stress on the existing manpower-based care models. The use of AI, IoT, big data and other new smart care technologies has become an important trend in the global healthcare industry. Imedtac uses time-of-flight (ToF) sensor technology to create a new generation of smart care system. The system can not only be quickly installed for use in wards, it can also help healthcare professionals to quickly and precisely understand care recipient's current status through AI analysis.
Tech can enable social impact, especially with capital funding. Joan Yao, VP of Investment of Kickstart Ventures, the corporate VC affiliated to Philippines' Globe Telecom, brought her story alive by sharing how tech enables social impact and her experience as an impact investor at Women in Venture XIII fireside chats with the host and curator of the event, Elisa Chiu, Anchor Taiwan founder, and CEO.
In the age of globalization, remote technology has become the best tool for educational organizations to shorten the distance between cities and rural areas and minimize the difference in resources, especially with the frantic adoption of remote teaching by many schools during the COVID-19 pandemic. With the unstable nature of the pandemic, this educational model may become a constant in the future. However, ensuring that teachers maintain the efficiency and quality of teaching in a different space and medium has become a problem schools must solve first. The vice president of AVer Information Inc, Stanley Cheng, stated that remote teaching in schools today mostly use existing online meeting platforms in the market. On the other hand, AVer has integrated AI technology into products to assist teachers in strengthening teaching efficiency through smarter functions.
Different industries have been finding different ways to adapt to the global digital transformation. For example, customer service centers, which are heavily reliant upon extensive manpower, are now looking to transform because of the difficulties associated with employee training and rising labor costs. The most common tactic of the first call centers to undergo this transformation process was to utilize voice-activated self-service systems, which would allow customers to select the information they need through the click of a button, thereby reducing the wait time and the burden on customer service staff. There are also enterprises that chose to move their customer service centers to cost-competitive areas or outsource the department to professional customer service enterprises in a bid to reduce overall costs.