French Tech Tour Asia:Promising Encounters

NICT Osaka:screen with Transformer

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18 months after its first visit for monitoring and benchmarking purposes, and less than a month after a presentation at the Smart Radio Symposium in South Korea, b<>com was back in Japan and South Korea in early December.

Thanks to its being selected to appear in Ubifrance's French Tech Tour, the IRT was able to use these five intensive days to get back in touch with two essential Asian markets in its fields of activity, right as its first solutions are coming out. 

Given the packed schedule of meetings and the profiles of the other labs and businesses in attendance, this mission focused on Hypermedia (4K phase 2, Augmented and Virtual Reality, holograms, 3D multi-camera, etc.). It was a chance to take the pulse of two very different markets that are both on the cutting edge of these issues. Korea is exhibiting clear economic dynamism, and its leading players (Samsung, LG, SK Telecom, ETRI), though they face occasional difficulties, are showing a still-impressive level ambition. In Japan, the hoped-for effect of "Abenomics" has still not taken place: Major companies have definitely benefited from the drop of the yen, but the economy remains extremely fragile. This isn't stopping the Japanese from actively preparing 5G and 8K in preparation for the 2020 Olympics. A single experimental 4K channel has been broadcasting content in Japan since last summer, while the ownership of UHD screens is already 20% (past 55 inches, all sales are for UHD screens.) 

4K (and its HDR/HFR developments), multi-camera views, holography, augmented (and virtual) reality, and spatial audio were all subjects of focus. Multiple discussions were begun regarding technological collaborations and partnerships. 

The mission also helped create ties with innovative start-ups from French Tech Japan, meet the Orange Labs Tokyo team, and make contact with multiple investor communities in both Tokyo and Seoul.

The highlights included a meeting with the famous NICT at the Ultra-realistic Video Systems Lab in Tokyo, where the latest holographic devices are designed, and in Osaka, where the world's largest autostereoscopic multi-view TV was presented (200 lights, 200" diagonal); also in Osaka, a meeting at Panasonic's headquarters; in Seoul, in addition to the impressive "Samsung City" (where 50,000 people work on-site), LG U + and LGE, SK Telecom and a trip to Daejon to meet ETRI, the world's top research center in ICT patent filings.

Emmanuelle Garnaud-Gamache, Ludovic Noblet and Jean-Yve Aubié in front of NICT's giant screen in Tokyo

World Cyberattack Detection and Control System (NICT Tokyo)

Meeting with film screening and monitor teams at Panasonic Osaka

Autostereoscopic 3D big screen at NICT Osaka