LAS VEGAS – A
networked society in which everyone and everything will be connected in real
time will transform industries and societies, and it’s not far away, Ericsson president/CEO
Hans Vestberg said yesterday during a keynote speech.
benefits from being connected will be connected in the future,” said the head
of the company that built 40 percent of the world’s deployed mobile
said, 85 percent of the world’s population is covered by mobile wireless
networks, and that will rise to more than 90 percent by 2015.
In the connected
society, cars will be equipped with wireless 4G LTE chips that alert nearby cars
in real time to potential hazards, thanks to LTE’s 5x greater latency over 3G,
Vestberg said. Ericsson will outfit more than 400 cargo ships operated by
Maesrk Lines, the world’s largest shipping company, with 4G LTE to monitor all
their vessels around the world in real time and reduce fuel consumption.
networking has already transformed Formula One racing, whose vehicles are
outfitted with sensors that transmit vehicle data in real time to computers to give
drivers an edge, said MIT professor Carlo Ratti, who briefly joined Vestberg on
stage. “Our environment is starting to behave like real-time control systems,”
thanks to wireless networking and sensor technology, he said.
networking has already transformed the ability of nongovernment aid organizations
in Africa to help refugees find lost family members more quickly, said
Christopher Mikkelsen, co-founder of Refugees United. Mikkelsen joined Vestberg
on stage to outline how Ericsson brings mobile base stations to refugee camps
to provide cellular service.
people themselves will become physical links in the networked society, Vestberg
said, pointing to new capacitive coupling technology being demonstrated at
Ericsson’s booth. Using that technology, people could exchange electronic
business cards from smartphone to smartphone just by shaking hands. People would
also be able to display a smartphone-stored picture on a TV screen simply by
holding the phone in one hand and touching the TV. And people could collect
information about an object just by touching it, he added.
When one person
connects to the network, that person’s life changes, Vestberg said. But “with
everything connected, the world changes.”