By Emma Okonji
The Managing Director of Rack Centre, a Certified Data Centre operator, Mr. Tunde Coker, has predicted that technology innovations would spring up in the post COVID-19 era.
According to him, the innovations would be expected to drive governance, work style, healthcare delivery, education and communication from their usual ways.
Coker, who spoke to the media during a webinar organised by his organisation, said the expected changes would bring about a new normal, drive productivity in governance and reduce operational costs in organisations in the post-COVID-19 era.
According to him, in the post COVID-19 era, activities would shift towards online and internet traffic would grow, with many people working from home, once they are connected to the internet.
“During the post COVID-19 era, semi-flex office staff location will spring up, where new offices will be created close to workers’ residence and they will travel only few kilometres to access the semi-flex office and work from there as a virtual team, while connecting to the office.
“Virtual Edutech will spring up, when students will be studying from their homes and getting connected to the school virtually through their connected devices like laptop, iPad and mobile phones.
“There will be high definition video and Augmented Reality (AR) will be used for healthcare delivery, where medical doctors will attend to people in remote and far places to carryout quick medical consultations. “Governments at all levels and organisations will hold meeting through digital conferences like video conference and teleconference. Documents will be signed digitally after each virtual meeting,” Coker said.
He argued that Blockchain technology would reach a new height of acceptability, while internet exchange volume would grow significantly.
Global supply chain would change and African countries would benefit more from such, he added.
Giving statistics of connectivity before and during the lockdown period, in order to back up his prediction, Coker said before the lockdown, Microsoft teams had 32 million global daily users, but that the connectivity increased to 44 million daily users with 900 million meetings on a daily basis globally, while Zoom, another online platform, had 10 million users daily before the global clampdown, but the figure rose to 200 million users daily during the global lockdown.
He said the implications for Nigerian government would be increased demand for broadband infrastructure in the post-COVID-19 era.
According to him, Rack Centre had since doubled its capacity and had put infrastructure in place that would enable organisations have access to its data from a remote location, without physically appearing at the data centre.
This, he said, would boost efficiency and reduce cost of operation.
He said the innovation from Rack Centre had helped it to engage and have connections to over 35 of its major carriers and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Nigeria, Tier 1 networks, pan Africa international carriers, and direct connection to all five undersea cables serving the South Atlantic Coast of Africa, and that every country on the Atlantic coast of Africa is directly connected to Rack Centre.
Coker advised that government must invest more in broadband infrastructure.
“FG must speed up its 2020-2025 Broadband Plan that has an all high target of 70 per cent broadband penetration by 2025. In the post-COVID-19 era, we need ubiquitous broadband access at very reduced rate to enable all Nigerians connect to the super highway, because majority of our activities will be online. We need more satellite technology to take broadband capacities to rural and remote places of the world,” Coker said.