When Steven Spielberg’s “A.I. Artificial Intelligence” first premiered in 2001, it was hailed as an ambitious foray into the unknown, into a dimension that the world had not yet ventured but was not completely unfamiliar with. The project was first conceived by legendary producer-director Stanley Kubrick, who handed over the production of “A.I.” to Spielberg.The idea that artificial intelligence (AI) or machines that exhibit human-like emotions could be a reality in the not so distant future was both intriguing and downright mind-boggling. The film itself is set in the 22nd century in a post-climate change era. In this conception, most of the world’s coastlines have been submerged underwater due to rising sea levels, with humans and humanoid robots living side-by-side with one another.

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The Asia Pacific (APAC) region at the beginning of the year looked vastly different than it does today. Roaming was exploding in the area, led by huge increases in international travel and a surge in demand for IoT.

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As the world continues to grapple with the uncertainty of COVID-19, the consequences of this pandemic, further exacerbated by global lackadaisicalness at the beginning of the outbreak, has driven many economies into recession and created a seismic shift in the job market. According to a report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the pandemic could potentially cost the world economy up to USD$ 8.8 trillion in losses, with the Asia Pacific region (APAC) accounting for 30% of this. If these estimates are correct, this would mean the loss of over 200 million full-time jobs worldwide; 70% of which will come from APAC.

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