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ITRI Exhibits New ICT Technology at WCIT 2017

ITRI’s technology highlights at WCIT 2017.

The World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT) is the largest international IT event in the world. Joining this grand event in Taipei this September, ITRI showcased its latest ICT technologies such as its on-site 360° video playback technology, which can be used at a concert or a ball game to let the audience sitting in the back row enjoy the same experiences as those in the front row. A cloud-based robot was also demonstrated to display the low-latency feature of 5G networks. A camera is mounted on the robot’s head to capture video images, which are relayed through 5G network to the cloud to conduct analysis and send back the results, enabling the robot to react to what it sees in real time. Dr. Tzi-Cker Chiueh, General Director of ITRI’s Information and Communications Research Laboratories, stressed that the end-to-end latency from the actual event to what the video shows in the goggles is 0.4 seconds, nearly hitting the current world-record.

Low-Latency & High-Reliability Applications in Pre-5G Networks

At WCIT 2017, ITRI demonstrated how a cloud robot assesses and reacts to an incident via video images in real time through a pre-5G low-latency, high-reliability wireless network. The robot will immediately stop lowering its arm to avoid damage when a train enters a pre-defined warning area. This scenario simulates the automation process in assembly lines. High-fidelity 3D cameras are installed in work areas to evaluate operation safety. When the camera detects any intruding objects, it immediately informs an edge control center through a pre-5G low-latency, high-reliability wireless network. The control center makes an assessment of the incident and issues a command to stop the robot when needed. This mechanism minimizes any potential harm to the equipment or operators, and is able to resume normal operation once the incident is cleared to reduce the down time.

A pre-5G low-latency, high-reliability wireless network can improve operation safety and production efficiency in smart manufacturing.

A pre-5G low-latency, high-reliability wireless network can improve operation safety and production efficiency in smart manufacturing.

The introduction of 5G wireless networks with low latency and high reliability to industry is expected to significantly benefit future factories. For example, the control and coordination amongst multiple robots can be managed by a centralized control center through 5G networks, which enhances robot mobility to achieve a high degree of factory automation. While the local edge cloud reduces network latency and controls the workflow of the robots, the remote center cloud collects operating parameters of the robots and data from environmental sensors for big data analysis, which produces optimal control models through the deep learning process. It then sends the newly updated parameters to the local edge cloud for optimal coordination of these robots to achieve the best production efficiency.

This technology can be widely applied to self-driving vehicles, drones, and smart manufacturing. Specifically, it increases the safety of autonomous driving by providing road condition information and enabling seamless communications between vehicles and infrastructure. In a factory environment, it allows remote control of a robot to work in high risk environments to minimize workplace hazards.

On-Site 360° Video Streaming System

ITRI’s On-Site 360° Video Streaming System is the very first total solution in the world that provides large events such as concerts and ball games with VR 360° live images. The system containing head ends, network transmissions, and video player presents a fabulous front row view for audience in the back row seats. It overcomes space limits in large stadiums and concert halls and thus viewers can enjoy live experiences with a first-person view angle and negligible latency.

ITRI’s system employs a GPU-based parallel processing technology for video stitching and encoding. Specifications include ultra-high definition (4K), 60 fps video streaming, >100M Wi-Fi transmission, and VR 360° low-latency video player, achieving a performance with less than 0.4 seconds of panoramic end-to-end delay, even in a high-density environment. This technology can be used with VR display systems to provide on-site live streaming video for immersive experiences.

ITRI’s On-Site 360° Video Streaming System provides live VR experiences with an end-to-end latency of 0.4 seconds.

ITRI’s On-Site 360° Video Streaming System provides live VR experiences with an end-to-end latency of 0.4 seconds.

Technological Glossary

The World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT), known as the Olympics of the IT industry, is the largest international IT event in the world. Featuring the theme of “Living the Digital Dream”, this year’s WCIT took place in Taipei on September 10-13. This is the second time that Taiwan hosted WCIT since 2000. The event covered topics including IoT, FinTech, Big Data, VR/AR/MR, and AI, attracting over 50,000 attendees from 80 countries through its conferences, business-matching sessions and exhibition. Global participants gathered to share the latest trends and explore Taiwan’s smart-city achievements.