Digital transformation

A Tesla China-made Model 3 vehicle owner sits inside a car during a delivery event at Tesla's Shanghai factory in China, 7 January 2020. (Aly Song/File Photo/Reuters)

Are smart cars really smart? Ways not to be held hostage by apps and tech

Chinese academic Zhang Tiankan looks at Tesla’s recent network outage incident in September and remembers a similar one suffered by Chinese consumers in May this year — a no-response "smart" car or a "missing" one on your connected car app is no fun at all. Zhang says while technology is useful, we must be aware that over-reliance can leave us vulnerable to malfunctions or prone to disparaging those who have yet to embrace the digital age.
Robin Li, co-founder and chairman of Baidu.com Inc., poses during a news conference in Tokyo, Japan, on 23 January 2008. (Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg News)

What happened to Baidu, once China's golden boy of innovation?

Wang Yanbo picks apart news of Baidu’s alleged plans to raise up to $2 billion over three years to invest in a biotech start-up, which would use AI technology to develop drugs and help diagnose diseases. Is this yet another example of business giants flailing into unchartered territory to seek new growth? Wasn’t China’s multi-billion dollar search market Baidu’s to harvest once Google ceased its Chinese operations in 2010 amid cyberattacks and censorship issues?
This photo taken on 1 September 2020 shows elementary school students attending a class on the first day of the new semester in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province. (STR/AFP)

Why online education fails to thrive in China amid the pandemic

The pandemic has provided a chance for a review of online internet platforms. Technology specialist Yin Ruizhi explains why online education platforms are getting the shorter end of the stick and why this offers a lesson for others hoping to ride the digital wave.
A police robot keeps watch on a shopping street in Shanghai, following the Covid-19 outbreak, on 16 June 2020. (Aly Song/Reuters)

Smart cities: The future of ASEAN-China cooperation

In the post-Covid-19 world, global supply chains are expected to be reconfigured as countries look to reduce their reliance on China. Enter greater room for ASEAN-China cooperation, particularly in areas related to the digital economy, such as in the development of smart cities. Associate Professor Gu Qingyang of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP) sets out the arguments.
In a digital age, panic-inducing information can spread even faster than viruses. In the photograph, a man wearing a facemask as a preventive measure against Covid-19 checks his mobile phone at Yu Garden in Shanghai on 23 March 2020. (Hector Retamal/AFP)

Unexpected digital age hazards amid the Covid-19 pandemic

Yin Ruizhi says citizen journalism gone awry and the further erosion of privacy by governments in the name of tackling the Covid-19 pandemic are some of the risks brought about by the digital age.
The East and the West have divergent reactions to the topic of state surveillance. In this photo taken on 15 January 2020, surveillance cameras are seen at Lujiazui financial district of Pudong, Shanghai. (Aly Song/Reuters)

Humanity needs to face the digital age as one family, not disparate warring tribes

Peter Chang says that as China spreads its wings across the world through digital networks and far-reaching projects under the Belt and Road Initiative, it is becoming ever more integrated with the global system. Like it or not, incumbent leaders such as the US would need to accept it into the fold, for the good of the world.
Skyline of the Suzhou Industrial Park, one of the many testing grounds for smart city building in China. (Suzhou Industrial Park)

How enterprises survive in China's smart cities

Some survive by possessing core technologies, some survive by promoting an exciting concept, some by self-transformation, others by buying out and inheriting superb small companies. Prof Chen Xi shares the various tactics for enterprises to survive and benefit from smart city market restructuring. Where will the new battleground of smart city projects be and how can Singapore play a role?
Companies in China are going through rapid digital transformation. (iStock)

Digital transformation the Chinese way

Implementing digital transformation initiatives in Chinese tech companies where the retirement age was a mere 40 years old, and extensions were granted as exceptions to good performers, Singaporean Kwek So Cheer learnt more about the Chinese psyche than he did any other practical knowledge.