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National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), in a joint partnership with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and Government of Andhra Pradesh, inaugurated the ‘Centre of Excellence on IoT and AI’ at Andhra University Campus, Visakhapatnam, aimed at promoting innovation in emerging technologies of IoT, AI, robotics, etc.

The centre was inaugurated by Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship & Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar and Andhra Pradesh Minister for Industries & Commerce, Information Technology and Skill Development Mekapati Goutham Reddy in the presence of Ajay Prakash Sawhney, IAS, Secretary, MeitY, Government of India, Sri P. V. G. D. Prasad Reddy, Vice Chancellor, Andhra University & Smt. G. Jayalakshmi, IAS, Principal Secretary, ITE&C, Government of Andhra Pradesh.

The new centre advances Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Digital India vision by providing open labs and infrastructure to create and validate solutions from design to prototype to democratise innovation. It also promotes entrepreneurship by providing an incubation facility for peer-to-peer learning and the benefit of an industrial environment.

Startups in the state are also expected to benefit through the launch of the new centre with newer opportunities in areas of their development, mentorship, funding, and the adoption of their solutions in the industry. The COE is currently working with enterprises interested in collaborating with start-ups for newer innovative solutions.

The Centre of Excellence of IoT and AI is a step towards solving real-world challenges and creating an impact. It is designed to be a catalyst that will help the industry embrace technology and become globally competitive. The centre will focus on harnessing the power of Artificial intelligence and the Internet of things to bring unprecedented opportunities for Industry, Start-ups, and Academia.

Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship & Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar said technologies like IoT, technologies like AI are going to deeply shape the future of technology landscape and the economy in general.

“It is absolutely essential that the Center of Excellence becomes not just academic extensions of university, but they become living, breathing growing centers of energy, dynamism, entrepreneurship, and technology development of the kind that we must deliver on in the coming months and years,” said Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship & Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar.

Andhra Pradesh Minister for Industries & Commerce, Information Technology and Skill Development Mekapati Goutham Reddy said the Andhra Pradesh government in creating itself as an incubation hub.

“We have 9 technologies, what we have said are going to be the sunrise technologies for world events. One is Artificial Intelligence & Machine learning, second is Robotic Process Automation, third is edge computing, which is an extension to Cloud computing, fourth is quantum computing, the fifth is virtual reality and augmented reality, sixth is blockchain, seventh is IoT, eighth is 5G and ninth is cyber security. If I can be a world-class leader in any of these nine technologies, then we’re talking about a trillion-dollar economy coming to the shores of Andhra Pradesh,” said Andhra Pradesh Minister for Industries & Commerce, Information Technology and Skill Development Mekapati Goutham Reddy.

Speaking at the function, Nasscom President Debjani Ghosh said the COE has become almost a melting point that beautifully connects the different ecosystems to understand the big problems that technology can solve, brainstorms the best use technology to address these challenges or problems, and jointly co-create solutions.

“A fantastic example was that during the pandemic, we realised that in order for us to successfully deliver remote healthcare to the last mile, to every single citizen in India, we needed solutions that would work in places that were very limited in resources like low-bandwidth, no power connectivity etc. and very quickly DBT, MeitY, Nasscom, got together to bring together healthcare professions to bring together startups, to bring together tech industries and figure out ways that we could address this critical issue of ensuring that every Indian could have access to healthcare no matter where they were,” said Nasscom President Debjani Ghosh.

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