AI is an accelerator of change in the UAE



Dubai - Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and advanced technologies have been accelerators of change in various fields.


Suneeti Ahuja Kohli

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Published: Thu 19 Aug 2021, 9:39 PM

The year 2017 will always be remembered as an inflexion point in the history of the UAE that set the course for a technologically advanced Emirates.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, had announced the launch of the UAE Centennial 2071 project, which aims to make the Emirates the best country in the world. The Emirates also launched the UAE Strategy for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and created the portfolio of minister for AI — the first in the world.

In the last four years, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and similarly advanced technologies have been accelerators of change in various fields, including education, health, space, renewable energy, water, environment, traffic, etc.

From virtual learning to tele-appointments with our doctors, artificial intelligence has helped us negotiate ways during the pandemic. In the UAE, the public and private sectors at various levels have used the technology to ensure minimal disruption due to the pandemic.

Retail: Think of retail; companies were able to offer no-contact pick-up and deliveries. The rise of cloud kitchens in the UAE, the use of machines for clever inventory assessment, use of smart machines and household appliances are various examples of our interaction with AI daily.

Healthcare: The wider adoption of remote medical consultations is the most conspicuous use of AI. The health authorities in the UAE launched ‘doctor for every citizen’ in December 2019. This facility came in handy during the pandemic and helped millions in the country. In the future, the Dubai Health Authority plans to use AI and robotics to automate surgeries and other procedures. It also plans to analyse data to identify genetic information and prevent people from various diseases.

Al plays a crucial role in controlling the spread of Covid-19, including extensive use of robots and drones in sanitising the streets and dispensing hand sanitizers.

Aviation: In 2018, the UAE’s aviation authority signed an agreement with Searidge Technologies to explore the use of AI in air traffic management. Facial recognition technology and smart gates at Dubai airport are some recent examples.

Law and order: Dubai Police’s Oyoon (which means eyes in Arabic) project uses AI network of smart cameras for surveillance tool which have proven effective in maintain law and order and catching offenders.

Rising use of virtual assistants: The banking and retail industry are benefitting significantly with the rising use of virtual assistants. These services are likely to evolve faster and play a crucial role in customer service roles in the near future.

Khaleej Times is organising the fourth edition of Artelligence – The Artificial Intelligence Forum, which will be held on September 13 in a hybrid format under the patronage of the National Programme for Artificial Intelligence.

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