The Department of Telecom at the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) will publish the weekly index of Vietnam’s Internet quality on its portal starting this month. The release of the Quality of Experience is to protect the interest of Internet users and raise the competitive edge of service providers.
According to a news report, the project was announced by the Vietnam Internet Network Information Centre (VNNIC) on 11 August. The VNNIC will collect the data from its Internet Speed system and publicise the information at the official portal. The released data will help users evaluate the Internet quality themselves. They are also advised to install the i-Speed app, the first Made-in-Vietnam Internet speed measuring app. It can check speed and quality and enables users to send feedback to service providers.
The app was developed by VNNIC from a web-based system to measure internet access quality in Vietnam. Available on iOS and Android platforms, i-Speed helps users check the speed of their Internet connection, including download and upload speeds, ping, and jitter, and quickly evaluates network service quality. Representatives from VNNIC and the Authority of Telecommunications said that i-Speed’s development together with data on Internet access quality has contributed to completing multidimensional statistics on Vietnam’s internet while promoting competitiveness between service providers.
In April, a report explained that figures from i-Speed show that average download and upload speeds across mobile networks reached 40.47 Mbps and 25.73 Mbps, respectively, in the first quarter. Those on fixed broadband were 57.60 Mbps and 47.40 Mbps. Last year, VNNIC joined hands with the Authority of Telecommunications and network service providers to develop internet speed measurement facilities in 30 localities nationwide. Soon, VNNIC will work to upgrade i-Speed to ensure that Vietnam has a safe and modern internet network and to improve the capacity of digital infrastructure to serve national digitalisation goals. Data on the internet connectivity speeds of internet service providers is announced on the official website, helping users choose suitable internet service providers.
In July, OpenGov Asia reported that Vietnam’s Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) adoption rate reached 44%, ranking second in ASEAN and 10th globally, VNNIC said in an effort to switch to IPv6, 44 out of 63 cities and provinces have issued their own action plans. IPv6 is expected to meet Vietnam’s demand to offer new and quality services such as the Internet of Things, 4G-LTE, and 5G networks, contributing to digital transformation and digital government building.
In the first half of this year, many localities such as Vinh Long, Binh Thuan, Hau Giang, Thai Binh, and Ha Tinh rolled out their plans to switch to IPv6. They partnered with the VNNIC to hold training for information technology officers in the field. The VNNIC also recently held a webinar on guidelines for IPv6 address planning for departments of information and communications in the central and Central Highlands regions. In Vietnam, 34 million mobile and 11 million Internet subscribers are using IPv6 services. As of mid-June, over 20% of information and public service portals by municipal and provincial authorities worked on the IPv6 platform.
The President of Indonesia had unveiled a three-pronged strategy to boost Indonesia’s economic growth, providing insight into the direction of government policy for the remainder of his term. The green economy, the digitalisation of micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), and the development of downstream industries are the three key aspects. Regarding the first of those three, he mentioned that the government intends to construct a “green industrial park” by October 2021 to produce “green products” using only renewable energy.
We know that the future of green products looks promising, and we have a great opportunity in this.
– President of Indonesia
The government also wants all 60 million MSMEs to be able to sell their goods and services on e-commerce and other digital platforms. Elaborating on the third key point, the President stated that the government began downstream industrial development in early 2020 with a ban on one of an ore export, which increased steel exports to US$10.5 billion. The scheme would be expanded to include additional goods and services such as bauxite, gold, copper, and palm oil.
The President’s speech represents the next step in a long-term shift in economic policymaking for a government that has previously appeared to be focused on short-term gains from extractive industries with little regard for environmental consequences. As per the Finance Ministry, the main sources of revenue from export levies and non-tax income are coal, crude palm oil (CPO), and raw mineral exports.
OpenGov Asia in an article reported that in recent years, the Indonesian government has taken concrete policy steps to advance its digital transformation agenda, and while steady progress has been made in that direction, the good news is that the pace of change is expected to accelerate. To address this, Indonesia’s President has pledged to press ahead with economic reform plans, despite the heavy burden that COVID-19 has imposed on the country since the outbreak began.
In his speech, the President stated that in today’s disruptive world, the spirit to change, the spirit to make changes, and the spirit to innovate has become the foundation for building an advanced Indonesia. In this context, the president’s agenda remained focused on structural reforms designed “to promote inclusive and sustainable economic development.” Repeating the promises made at the beginning of his second term, he added that the development of “quality human capital” and infrastructure development will remain priorities, the latter a hallmark of his seven years in power.
The Indonesian leader also expressed hope that reform would help the country begin the transition to a more sustainable economy. “A significant change in our economy will be the transition to new and renewable energy, as well as the acceleration of an economy based on green technology. The President believes that using clean energy and green technology will contribute to the development of a more environmentally friendly economy. As a result, efforts will be made to strengthen national research to align with the country’s development agenda.
Meanwhile, according to the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, renewable energy sources accounted for 11.2% of the national energy mix in 2020, with the remainder coming from fossil fuels. As per the executive director of the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR), the idea of environmental economics should be accompanied by responsibilities to reduce emissions, waste, and natural resource extraction.
“The term ‘green’ must not just be a slogan; there is a lot to do to [justify] such a claim,” IESR executive director told. The concept, he said, should be incorporated into a clear transition for all industries in Indonesia, reducing reliance on natural resources and extractive industry exports. He went on to say that one industrial park is insufficient to [declare] a green economy. As a result, the entire industry must follow suit.
Minnesota is among the latest states to introduce a secure digital option for residents to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19. Using an app called Docket, Minnesotans can now view and share their immunisation records with local businesses, restaurants and other public venues where COVID vaccination is required.
The release of the app comes after the state Department of Health has been flooded with requests for vaccination records. So far this year, there have been more than 33,000 vaccine record requests, with 19,000 coming since July 1.
We recognise the importance of having a secure and convenient way to find, view, and share people’s their your family’s immunisation records, such as needing records for school or child care.
– Minnesota Department of Health, Infectious Disease Division Director
Residents who were vaccinated within the state can use the app to pull up their records through the Minnesota Immunisation Information Connection (MIIC), a confidential system that stores electronic immunisation records. The app then gives users the option of saving and distributing a PDF document of the record as they see fit.
The app allows residents to access a digital copy of their vaccination records without having to sign up for an app specifically intended for verifying COVID-19 vaccines. Docket uses two-factor security and searches for immunisation records based on a person’s name and date of birth.
The app also gives state residents a faster way to access their immunisation records. The volume of recent records requests to the health department means it is taking weeks for people to get their vaccination records back, but the app gives an option for people to more directly and quickly access their immunisation information.
Efforts to provide U.S. residents with digital versions of their immunisation records have picked up steam in recent months as employers and retail businesses increasingly require such proof. Reports of individuals providing fake COVID vaccine records have pushed states to launch their own verification apps to give residents a state-verified digital option for proving their vaccination status.
Residents who do not have a smartphone or do not want to use the app can still request a record of their vaccinations from the state or their health care provider. Those requests are currently taking weeks because of increased demand.
Virginia has also announced the addition of QR codes to its vaccination records. The code, which can be scanned using a smartphone, provides the same information as the paper records – however, since it is digitally signed by the Virginia Department of Health, it cannot be altered or forged. Virginia is the fifth state to adopt the secure SMART Health format.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, the COVID-19 pandemic revealed how big data and analytics technologies are being used in the public health sector. For example, governments and organisations developed contact tracing, where phone numbers and location data from mobile devices were combined with lab results in public health systems to issue alerts when an individual came in contact with a confirmed COVID patient. This information empowered people to preemptively self-isolate and/or head for rapid testing.
Public health agencies must understand how to use data effectively as the use of big data during the pandemic is essential. They should start working on plans to protect the privacy of the end-user and comply with the evolving laws around personal data privacy.
Additionally, organisations should determine what they will do with the data they are gathering. Data is only worthwhile if the organisations use the right tools to read and interpret it. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is vital for processing the vast amounts of data collected by today’s technology.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has introduced a revised circular requiring designated payment systems (DPS) to embrace the Principles for Financial Market Infrastructure (PFMI) to ensure the country’s national payment system’s continued safety, the efficiency of the flow of funds, and reliability (NPS).
The BSP Governor, who signed Circular No. 1126, asserted in the memo that the mandatory adoption of the PFMI will necessitate the adoption of its principles by all DPS participants. As of July, of this year, the BSP’s Peso Real-time Gross Settlement System (PhP-RTGS) is the country’s first DPS.
The Governor stated that the BSP will use PFMI assessment methodology to determine the DPS’s adherence to relevant principles, as well as identify potential risks and induce changes in the NPS. In terms of non-designated payment systems, he stated that the BSP could evaluate DPS participants’ practises and operations using key considerations under relevant principles such as credit and liquidity risk management and settlement.
The adoption of the standard is very timely given the surge of digital payments in the country, as it ensures payment systems to have safeguards in place which are at par with global practices.
– Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas
The deployment of PFMI is in accordance with the Payment System Oversight Framework (PSOF) of the BSP and the National Payment Systems Act (NPSA). Implementation of the PFMI may be subject to cooperative arrangements with other regulatory authorities in cases involving non-payment system financial market infrastructures (FMI) and cross-border payment systems, according to the governor. The circular also established expectations for critical service providers (CSPs) as defined by the PSOF. It provides guidance and assistance in ensuring that a CSP’s operations are held to the same standards as the DPS’s.
The Bank for International Settlement and the International Organisation of Securities Commissions formed the PFMI. PFMI is essentially a collection of international standards for financial market infrastructures such as payment systems, central securities depositories, securities settlement systems, central counterparties, and trade repositories. Adoption of the PFMI will ensure that the payment system operates in accordance with global best practices in terms of safety, efficiency, and reliability. With the DPS conforming to the PFMI to be more resilient to financial crises and participant defaults, the public interest is better protected, promoting trust in payment systems.
All DPS, whether a systemically important payment system or a prominently important payment system, will use PFMI to design and conduct its operations. “Each DPS is expected to demonstrate adequate governance and risk management arrangements covering areas including access of participants to the system, management of liquidity, credit, operational, settlement and general business risks, efficiency, and transparency,” said the BSP.
The NPSA empowers the BSP, as payment system regulator, to designate a payment system if it determines that the payment system poses or has the potential to pose systemic risk, or if the designation is required to protect the public interest. The PhP-RTGS is the Philippines’ only payment system that allows for settlement with central bank money.
In an article, OpenGov Asia reported that the government of the Philippines has made e-commerce and electronic payment methods a priority in efforts to boost both financial and digital inclusion throughout the country. In line with this, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) recently reaffirmed that they will continue to promote the digitalisation of financial products and services in the country even after the restrictions forced by the pandemic are lifted.
Last year, the central bank released the Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap (DPTR) for 2020-2023. Under the DPTR, the BSP aims to increase customer preference for digital payments by converting 50% of total retail payments to digital form and increasing the number of financially included Filipino adults to 70% by onboarding them to the formal financial system via payment or transaction accounts.
The BSP’s open market operations, issuance of its securities, the Philippine Peso leg of the PhP-US Dollar transaction, and domestic securities transactions are all settled via the PhP-RTGS. It also provides deferred net settlement for retail payment systems such as checks, ATMs, and E-payments.
China developed a miniaturised quantum satellite ground station. The ground station is light and portable and can be installed within 12 hours, allowing users in remote areas to use quantum communication conveniently. The piece of quantum key distribution equipment is about the same size as a laptop, which can greatly reduce the cost of quantum network building and maintenance.
In recent years, China has achieved a series of breakthroughs in quantum technology, including the world’s first quantum satellite, a 2,000-km quantum communication line between Beijing and Shanghai, and the world’s first optical quantum computing machine prototype.
With the active participation of leading enterprises and the guidance of the government, an industrial chain that covers the equipment, network, safety and standards of quantum communication has been basically formed in China.
– Quantum Scientist, University of Science and Technology, China
A hub for China’s quantum technology is home to over 20 quantum technology enterprises and achieved an output value of some 430 million yuan (about $66.5 million) in 2020. The quantum information technology is to be further integrated, convenient and low-cost, allowing more people to have access to it.
China’s quantum company has tried out the quantum encryption calls in 15 provinces and has garnered some 10,000 users. The users can have secure calls and messages encrypted with quantum keys after inserting a SIM card and installing a related app, which can ensure information security.
Besides quantum communication, quantum precision measurement and quantum computation have also seen great breakthroughs in industrial applications. Quantum precision measurement instruments can achieve nanoscale high spatial resolution and single spin ultra-high detection sensitivity, which has been applied to study magnetic and superconducting materials.
Chinese scientists have set up an integrated quantum network that combines 700 fibre and two ground-to-satellite links and realised quantum key distribution between more than 150 users over a combined distance of 4,600 km.
Based on the laws of quantum physics, quantum communications have ultra-high security. It is impossible to wiretap, intercept or crack the information since the quantum state of a photon that transmits data along optical fibre will collapse once it is wiretapped.
In the quantum network, several services such as video call, audio call, fax, text transmission and file transmission have been realised for technological verification and real-world demonstrations, adding commercial use is expected in the near future.
A global quantum network can be realised by connecting more national quantum networks from different countries via ground connections or ground-to-satellite links. In the future, quantum communication will be applied in fields of finance, political affairs and national defence. A whole industry chain and eventually a truly secure quantum internet will be possible.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, China issued a guideline that detailed measures to promote the region’s economic growth, scientific and technological innovation, urbanisation, green development, opening-up, and people’s well-being. By 2025, the comprehensive strength and competitiveness of the region should be further enhanced, and marked progress should be achieved in innovation capacity, with its proportion of research and development input in the regional Gross Domestic Product (GDP) reaching the national average.
Regarding promoting advanced manufacturing, the guideline urges the building of industrial bases focused on sectors including intelligent manufacturing, new materials, new-energy vehicles and electronic information.
The supply of high-quality public goods, such as world-class universities and large-scale medical institutions, should be increased in the region, the guideline says, specifying that world-renowned universities will be encouraged to run schools in partnership with local institutions and conduct research and develop technology to solve problems. Large-scale comprehensive medical institutions are welcome to set up subsidiaries in the region.
The Department of Industrial Technology (DoIT) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) is supporting the cooperation between Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), the Artificial Intelligence (AI) on Chip Taiwan Alliance (AITA), and the UCLA Center for Heterogeneous Integration and Performance Scaling (CHIPS).
Both organisations signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Cooperation in Heterogeneous Integration Advanced Packaging, aiming to utilise Taiwan’s Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIoT) advantages and the experience of the U.S. in high-performance computing to jointly strengthen complementary forward-looking semiconductor technology R&D. This is expected to add depth to cooperation between Taiwan and the US in supply chains and launch new business opportunities for AI chips.
DoIT supports ITRI, ATIA, and UCLA CHIPS in inking a collaborative agreement, which will help the parties quickly grasp international system specification trends in the areas of design, manufacturing and packaging. The parties will complement each other in working to create the next generation of innovative AI technologies and services, forging reliable partnerships.
– DoIT Science and Technology Advisor
Die-to-die (D2D) interconnection bandwidth plays a vital role in heterogeneous integration. ITRI has over the years created a solid foundation in cultivating packaging technology, and the specifications of the patented high-speed communications interface developed under the AI on Chip initiative already surpass those of major international manufacturers. In the future, these technologies will be used in innovative applications that require high bandwidth, such as 8K high-resolution images and 5G communications.
The partnership with UCLA CHIPS offers two main advantages: First, Taiwan’s D2D technology will be able to be promoted internationally. Second, UCLA CHIPS has the latest heterogeneous integration technology. This will help connect international system integration requirements with Taiwan’s semiconductor ecosystem.
ITRI’s pilot line will verify the functionality of its product prototypes, and further orders for products can be forwarded to Taiwan’s semiconductor manufacturers, assisting the industry in solidifying links with international contacts.
UCLA CHIPS Director stated that their collaboration with ITRI is a centrepiece of their international collaboration in the area of heterogeneous integration and packaging for high-performance computing and AI. The feedback and suggestions from ITRI have had a very positive and meaningful impact on their research direction, execution and most importantly on the education of our students who will lead this work in the years to come.
This collaboration offers opportunities in the development of international specifications for heterogeneous integration and provides a window for technology promotion and exchanges. Taiwan’s mature industry chain and abundant experience in chip production, in conjunction with UCLA’s resources, will pave the way for Taiwan manufacturers to take the lead in creating a strategic blueprint and accelerating development for AI chips.
Taiwan has utilised AI in various fields, including agriculture. As reported by OpenGov Asia, The Taiwanese government has combined Taiwan’s advantages in planting technology with the IT industry by introducing Artificial intelligence technology to transform Taiwanese farms into standardised production and a competitive agribusiness in the global market.
For example, the total dragon fruit farm areas in Taiwan have exceeded over 3,000 hectares, but the output is still less than in many other countries. To solve the issue for dragon fruit farmers, the Industrial Development Bureau (IDB) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MoEA) of Taiwan, the promoter of smart applications and technologies, has joined forces with Pingtung county government and a Taiwanese communications company to establish a smart demo field in Taiwan’s largest dragon fruit farm.
State-run carrier Viettel has successfully researched, tested, and established a 5G data transmission speed of more than 4.7Gb per second. This speed is 40 times higher than the 4G speed and more than two times the existing 5G speed, making Viettel one of the fastest 5G telecom networks in Asia.
According to a press release, the result confirms the outstanding capacity of the 5G ultra-short wave (mmWave) technology that Viettel is deploying in Vietnam. A 5G network with super high speeds is the foundation for building smart factories, agriculture, cities, healthcare, and education. To achieve a record data transmission speed, the research team of Viettel and a few other private players used the world’s most advanced E-UTRA New Radio Dual Connectivity (EN-DC) technology to increase speed and extend 5G coverage.
In the process of implementing technical solutions at Viettel Innovation Lab, Viettel used private player radio equipment and mobile devices using a state-of-the-art processor. Viettel has been a pioneer in deploying 5G in Vietnam and the only network operator in the world with the capacity to research and develop 5G equipment. The CEO of Viettel Networks stated that this breakthrough in speed helps increase the efficiency of Viettel’s 5G network. The organisation will continue to promote this technology so that people, businesses, governments, and society at large can experience the distinct benefits of 5G in particular and 4.0 technology in general.
An industry expert noted that this is an easy-to-install solution that promises to accelerate widespread 5G deployment in high-density urban areas with many preeminent features, ensuring the best user experience. The results of the trial confirm that Viettel’s 5G infrastructure is ready to deliver outstanding 5G services and experiences and promote the vision of digitising industries in Vietnam. This achievement enables large capacity, multi-Gigabit speeds, and low latency in solutions for individuals and businesses. The country has taken another important step in enabling Vietnamese people to access high-speed 5G equipment anytime, anywhere.
Earlier in July, Hanoi authorities announced a new postal telecommunications infrastructure development plan for 2025 with a vision for 2030. It aims to serve the city’s digital transformation programme. It defines postal infrastructure as an important factor of the digital economy, which contributes to promoting the development of a digital government and digital society.
Under the plan, the city targets 100% of communes to establish a post office with staff; all households register digital addresses; 4G/5G services and smartphones universalised, and fibre-optic broadband covering 80% of local households and every commune. Meanwhile, 80% of local industrial parks, high-tech parks and higher education facilities, hospitals, and public departments will be covered by 5G services. Also, about 95% of total households in Hanoi are expected to own and use at least one smartphone by 2025.
As OpenGov Asia reported, the city will prioritise high-quality broadband telecommunication infrastructure in high-tech parks, concentrated IT parks, industrial parks, export processing zones, R&D and innovation centres, schools, state agencies, hospitals, and tourism sites. Hanoi will also develop free WiFi networks in all tourist sites across the city. Apart from this, the city will speed up activities to promote the universalisation of smartphones and help local residents to access digital services easily. To this end, the municipal People’s Committee is encouraging economic sectors to build postal and telecommunication infrastructure systems and diversify telecommunication services.
Self-driving cars are likely to be the future of transportation, but safety concerns are hurdles that researchers have to overcome to make fully autonomous vehicles become a reality. To accelerate that timeline, U.S. researchers have developed the first set of “certifiable perception” algorithms, which could help protect the next generation of self-driving vehicles — and the vehicles they share the road with. When robots sense their surroundings, they must use algorithms to make estimations about the environment and their location.
These perception algorithms are designed to be fast, with little guarantee of whether the robot has succeeded in gaining a correct understanding of its surroundings. This is one of the biggest existing problems. Our lab is working to design certified algorithms that can tell you if these estimations are correct.
– Lead researcher
Robot perception begins with the robot capturing an image, such as a self-driving car taking a snapshot of an approaching car. The image goes through a machine-learning system called a neural network, which generates key points within the image about the approaching car’s mirrors, wheels, doors.
From there, lines are drawn that seek to trace the detected key points on the 2D car image to the labelled 3D key points in a 3D car model. The researchers must then solve an optimisation problem to rotate and translate the 3D model to align with the key points on the image. This 3D model will help the robot understand the real-world environment.
Each traced line must be analysed to see if it has created a correct match. Since many key points could be matched incorrectly. The team’s algorithm smooths the non-convex problem to become convex and finds successful matches. If the match is not correct, their algorithm will know how to continue trying until it finds the best solution, known as the global minimum. A certificate is given when there are no better solutions.
These certifiable algorithms have a huge potential impact because tools like self-driving cars must be robust and trustworthy. The goal is to make it so a driver will receive an alert to take over the steering wheel if the perception system has failed.
The 3D model gets morphed to match the 2D image by undergoing a linear combination of previously identified vehicles. For example, the model could shift from being an Audi to a Hyundai as it registers the correct build of the actual car. Identifying the approaching car’s dimensions is key to preventing collisions.
The lead researcher stated that to achieve trustworthy autonomy, it is time to embrace a diverse set of tools to design the next generation of safe perception algorithms. There must always be a failsafe since no human-made system can be perfect. The safety precautions for self-driving cars will take the power of both rigorous theory and computation to revolutionise what it can be successfully unveiled to the public.
U.S. researchers have been developing robotic technologies for various purposes, including to help people with disabilities. As reported by OpenGov Asia, U.S. Researchers have now developed an alternative approach that they believe could offer much more precise control of prosthetic limbs. After inserting small magnetic beads into muscle tissue within the amputated residuum, they can precisely measure the length of a muscle as it contracts, and this feedback can be relayed to a bionic prosthesis within milliseconds.
In a new study appearing today in Science Robotics, the researchers tested their new strategy, called magnetomicrometry (MM), and showed that it can provide fast and accurate muscle measurements in animals. They hope to test the approach in people with amputation within the next few years.