AT&T Offers Sneak Peek at a Connected Future

 
 
By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2014-05-19 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

AT&T hosted its annual Innovation Showcase, an event to show off its vision of the future and what its network can make possible, in New York May 16. "I don't know of any industry where change is happening at such a rapid pace," said Marian Croak, AT&T's senior vice president of Applications and Services Infrastructure and an engineer and innovator with at least 156 patents to her name. That change, said Croak, has been driven by smartphones and is now changing the way carriers design their networks and offer services to customers. In the years ahead, as AT&T makes a dramatic shift from a hardware- to a software-based network, smartphones will be joined on the network by an array of devices, from wearables and cars to sensors inside shower heads and appliances, all sharing information, promoting communication, and making businesses more efficient and our lives, if not easier, at least more interesting. AT&T-backed innovators from across the country showed off a variety of solutions—from game changers to conveniences to what-ifs—in various stages of readiness. AT&T says the mission of its Foundry and Labs is to, at a high level, invent the future. Below, we offer a glimpse.

 
 
 
  • AT&T Offers Sneak Peek at a Connected Future

    by Michelle Maisto
    1 - AT&T Offers Sneak Peek at a Connected Future
  • EyeDecrypt

    EyeDecrypt enables users to view personal or confidential information—digital or printed—in public places. It also offers simply a more secure way of ensuring that only intended recipients have access to information. The technology uses a mobile device's camera as an eye through which users can see otherwise scrambled information.
    2 - EyeDecrypt
  • EyeDecrypt

    The software can also create a randomized keyboard that re-randomizes with every keystroke as a user enters a PIN, whether a one-time PIN or not. While a 5 is displayed, it's not actually the number the user typed.
    3 - EyeDecrypt
  • SmartMic

    David Daudelin, an AT&T senior specialist app developer, and Pamela Kanal invented SmartMic, a feature intended to be integrated into the PlanIt conferencing app. The feature enables a user to digitally raise her hand at a conference; a moderator can then call on her, activating the phone to act as a personal microphone and saving everyone the time of waiting for a shared mic to be passed.
    4 - SmartMic
  • Dashboard Messenger

    Dashboard Messenger asks the question: Can a small device plugged into a car's 12v outlet, with two buttons enabling "yes/no, chicken/beef kind of answers," keep drivers safe by reducing distracted driving?
    5 - Dashboard Messenger
  • Dashboard Messenger

    The device also features GPS, enabling it to be tracked via a Web console. Craig Lee, director AT&T's Foundry in Plano, Texas, imagines a parent could use the device to communicate with young drivers—a parent could even receive alerts such as if the car exceeds the speed limit—but that it also has potential to help delivery drivers (a manager could be alerted to an issue and make the necessary calls, instead of the driver) or place other kinds of alerts, such as that the garage door was left up.
    6 - Dashboard Messenger
  • RCloud

    Based on R, a code-based language used by data analysts, RCloud puts not just documents but analysis in the cloud. Code, saved in notebooks, is available to anyone whose work might benefit from it—data scientists needn't remake various wheels, as it were, to proceed. RCloud also speeds deployment, since a few paired notebooks can constitute an app.
    7 - RCloud
  • Rich Media Care

    Rich Media Care explores how an application that allows people to share photos and videos with customer service agents could improve the experience and speed the process.
    8 - Rich Media Care
  • Cascade

    AT&T will soon allow subscribers to add a car to a shared-data plan as easily as a tablet. As the number of devices attached to each of our identities increases, Cascade suggests one way that voice and messaging services linked to a primary device might be made available to secondary devices. A call to the primary device would reach out to each sub-device as well.
    9 - Cascade
  • A Changing AT&T

    At AT&T's Innovation Showcase, Marion Croak talked about the ways AT&T is changing its network as well as how it is changing as a company. "We used to be much more protective. Now, we make APIs available … and give developers tools to use so that reliability and resiliency—things that can take years to develop—are [immediately] available to any innovator," she said.
    10 - A Changing AT&T
  • At a Moment of Reinvention

    Christopher Rice, vice president of Advanced Technologies and Architecture at AT&T, oversees the taking of "big bets." When asked what he's most excited about right now, Rice told eWEEK, "When you look at the historic events in telecom, there's the move from analog to digital, then from voice to data and then cellular. We're in one of those exciting moments again now, moving to software."
    11 - At a Moment of Reinvention
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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