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Mobile carriers sharpen AI services for corporate clients amid pandemic

(SK Telecom Co.)
(SK Telecom Co.)
As the business appetite for cloud and remote work services grows amid the pandemic, South Korean telecom operators are expanding artificial intelligence (AI) services to help companies cope with the shift to new technologies.

While the country's three major carriers -- SK Telecom Co., KT Corp. and LG Uplus Corp. -- have traditionally focused on AI services for subscribers, such as virtual assistants, they have recently targeted corporate clients to help them deal with growing network issues surrounding remote work technology.

Telecom giant KT said last week it developed an AI service that can detect both wired and mobile network problems and fix issues on its own.

The AI engine compares the network's status with its database of learned network equipment issues and is able to take necessary steps automatically if problems arise, according to the telecom operator.

Top mobile carrier SK Telecom is also shifting its AI focus to companies and is launching a service that detects cost irregularities in cloud services.

The service launch comes as the pandemic has boosted global cloud spending as companies adopt work-at-home policies.

SK Telecom said the new service can help companies cut any unnecessary costs stemming from the increasing use of cloud services.

Local rival LG Uplus partnered with global public cloud service operator Google Cloud last month to develop 5G technologies, geared for companies, using AI.

Under the partnership, Google Cloud will provide its artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to develop new services that utilize mobile edge computing (MEC) technology on the telecom operator's 5G network.

MEC is a key technology that delivers ultra-low latency data in 5G networks and is expected to boost upcoming services, such as smart factories, autonomous cars and cloud gaming. It minimizes latency by providing a "shortcut" for data transmission through small-scale data centers.

The telecom operators' new focus in AI services comes as worldwide spending on artificial intelligence is expected to reach $110 billion in 2024, more than double the $50.1 billion forecast to be spent this year, according to industry researcher International Data Corp. (Yonhap)