Our nation’s economy depends on technology and innovation. Essential to growth and innovation is the underlying infrastructure—a robust network platform.
As we discuss the policies and role of government in creating an environment for innovation, infrastructure providers must be a part of the conversation. CenturyLink’s CEO and President Glen Post and Chief Technology Officer Aamir Hussain participated with other industry leaders in an engaging discussion June 22 at the White House during “Tech Week” titled “American Leadership in Emerging Technology.”
The White House discussions focused on innovation, 5G technology and infrastructure. Our network, when combined with data analytics and the Internet of Things, brings important benefits to the daily lives of every American. By working with government and other businesses, we can provide a platform for our customers to solve long-standing problems.
As an example, CenturyLink’s collaboration with Eagle Force is now addressing rampant opioid abuse in a variety of ways across the nation through the use of timely data analytics. Eagle Force provides data at the national, state, pharmacy and physician levels allowing continuous and reliable accountability and analysis that can ultimately advance the fight against the opioid epidemic and instill positive change in our country.
Regardless if it is fiber based or wireless, the IoT is really about connectivity that is increasing at a rate that will challenge all network providers from a capacity, security and reliability standpoint. Whether talking about the 5G platforms or the IoT, it’s crucial to remember that the network is evolving from a security and reliability standpoint at the same pace innovation occurs. We all are aware of the constant attacks on networks, which translate into attacks on our homes, businesses and government. As we talk about innovation, we must also talk about how our networks will evolve to meet ever increasing security challenges and attacks.
Finally, it’s important to note that investing in infrastructure creates new jobs and positively impacts productivity both in the telecommunications industry as well as in the general population. The number of interconnected devices is growing at an incredible rate, and is projected to more than triple between 2016 and 2020. Additionally, CenturyLink has enabled multiple gigabit cities. These cities represent the new economy for municipalities in that the speed and capacity of the network is spurring innovation, entrepreneurship, healthcare and education solutions, and automated efficiencies that address things like security, traffic flow and cost savings.
An ongoing and collaborative partnership with the federal government will be critical in developing policies that will improve infrastructure, create jobs and improve America’s business climate. President Trump’s administration is to be commended for leading discussions of this type and seeking input from our nation’s business leaders.
Unlocking the full potential of new technology in this country depends on many factors, but there is little doubt that the extension of fiber deep into our nation’s infrastructure, when combined with a light touch regulatory structure and a renewed emphasis on a manageable security framework, will achieve that potential much more quickly.