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How Will You Use ICT to Change the Future of Truth?

We are excited to announce that we have launched the Ericsson Innovation Awards for the 4th consecutive season. Teams of university students world-wide can now submit their innovative ideas for a chance to receive expert mentorship, a trip to Stockholm and €50,000 in cash prizes.
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Given Ericsson’s strong history of leading innovation and powering the internet of everything, it only makes sense that we would explore one of the most relevant topics effecting the Networked Society: Truth.

We’re asking: In a time when information is everywhere, how can we know what’s true? What new sources will we access to find information in the future? How can technology help us verify what is factual? What standards will we use? And, how will ICT help us share information with others?

Truth is Trending

One of my favorite things about this topic is how relevant it is. Sure – the state of truth in journalism and politics is a hot topic – but, I love how relevant it is to technology and the ever-expanding IoT.

Earlier this year, Ericsson’s ConsumerLab released the 2017 Top 10 Consumer Trends – an annually published report on ICT trends for the year. 6 out of 10 of year’s trends have an influence on Truth in the way we receive and process information, experience the world and share with others.


Trend 1: AI Everywhere

Did you know that Artificial Intelligence is behind some of the news stories you read? News leaders like the Associated Press are using AI to report on numbers-focused content like company reports and stock briefings. With a robot behind the reports and a focus on numbers, we can trust that there is no bias. But, as AI expands to report more than just numbers, could the biases of the programmer become the biases of the robot? What ideas do you have to ensure that AI reporting is accurate? And, what new applications are possible?

Trend 4: Merged Reality

Merged reality occurs when objects from the real and virtual world can interact, allowing for a seamless and immersive experience. The connection to truth is simple – if your experience is made up of things from both the real and virtual world, what aspect of your experience is true? 4 out of 5 virtual reality users believe that the real world will be indistinguishable from the virtual world in only 3 years. You may be living in the Matrix before you know it.

Trend 5: Bodies Out of Sync

Speaking of reality, our bodies can’t seem to differentiate the truth either. 1 in 3 survey respondents said they wanted motion sickness pills for virtual reality. As latency (and therefore the virtual experience) improves, our bodies should get more in sync. What ideas do you have to help our bodies and our minds align in the virtual world?

Trend 7: Social Silos

We are increasingly relying on social media as a news source. But, we are often connected to like-minded people, and filtering our news based on interests often exposes us to limited viewpoints. Technology simultaneously connects us and separates us into groups that echo one another’s views. Do you have a technical solution that could help expand our circle?

Trend 8: Augmented Personal Reality

Pokémon Go made Augmented Reality a hot topic last year. Although the game’s popularity has decreased, it’s opened a world of interest in AR and how it can be manipulated to our every whim. According to ConsumerLab, a third of respondents would use AR to edit out disturbing elements in their surroundings. Where’s the truth in that? Or, are we going to start to perceive a more pleasant version of the truth?

Trend 9: The Privacy Divide

The Privacy Divide refers to the gap between those who feel that information should be protected and those who believe all information is public. Privacy may be the least obvious trend connected to truth, but it is certainly connected. As more of our experiences, opinions and activities go online, it raises the question – even if information is true, should it be available to everyone? Are some things still private, or are we all entitled to one another’s truth? Perhaps you have an idea that can bridge the divide.


What’s your big idea for the Future of Truth?

You’re not limited to these trends. Your opportunity to influence the future is as limitless as your imagination.

It seems like not long ago we were congratulating our 2017 winners, team SNAP on taking home the grand prize from the Nobel Museum in Stockholm. I can’t wait to see the idea that wows industry experts and brings home the top prize in 2018. Will it be yours?

Register today for the Ericsson Innovation Awards! Registration is open through November 15, 2017.

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