The year 2018 has been quite monumental for Bosch India, especially with regards to their ‘smart solutions’. In a recent event, Bosch India had especially focussed on the three areas for their growth plan for the coming year.
- Energy-efficient solutions and connected products (such as power tools and security systems)
- Cross-functional teams as a key to success in the IoT era
- Pursuing a “3S” strategy: sensors, software, and services
We caught up with Dattatri Salagame, Head of Digital Business at Robert Bosch Engineering and Business Solutions Ltd, and talked about their India-specific endeavours like, how they are designing and deploying customised digital solutions for the Indian customers, offering end-to-end digital stack solutions and consultation to enterprises, and operating on unique Lead User-Lead Provider strategy where they first use then perfect digital solutions.
Analytics India Magazine: What does Beyond Mobility 2.0 mean to you?
Dattatri Salagame: Bosch is boosting its Beyond Mobility business units with digital solutions that capitalize on growing infrastructure and demand. Over the last few years, business beyond mobility sectors have gained 35 percent and have contributed greatly to the overall group’s turnover. Fueled by the impetus from the Indian government amid structural reforms such as GST, the country is undergoing a rapid transformation that is setting up Bosch’s beyond mobility business units for accelerated growth as it goes from the conventional to digital by transforming businesses beyond mobility.
AIM: How are artificial intelligence and the internet of things a part of this journey?
DS: Bosch worldwide is transforming and helping its customers in their digital journey. Our products earlier too had an element of AI, whether its ABS or ESP all of them had an AI in the software to predict anomaly and react, to ensure safe driving. In today’s digital world we go much beyond this and with our knowledge across the spectrum of Sensor, Software and Services we are one of the biggest IoT enabling companies.
Phantom is a good example of how an earlier energy meter is now smarter with AI. We are not only able to use this to measure energy but to jump start Industry 4.0. AI in phantom is able to bring self-awareness among SMEs about energy, asset utilization, the efficiency of their shop floor etc. Data always existed we just built and AI to analyze and report. Similarly, the Bosch Eyecare fundus camera with its AI in it can detect anomalies in the retina and predict diabetes better than a doctor. The current sensitivity and specificity of the AI are 96 and 98 % accordingly
The Bangalore Center for AI is one of the global centres for Bosch – the team of data scientists, data engineers and visualization engineers work towards innovation. Bosch will strategically build innovative solutions across domains using new technologies with very strong AI backbone.
AIM: Examples of cutting-edge work done by Bosch in this area
DS: Bosch is working in the fields of connected industry, healthcare, agriculture, smart cities with the framework of sensor, software and services. Here are some of the examples:
- Climo is a Microclimate monitoring Systems and CES Honoree in 2018 is a good example of how we can address the issue of Air Quality with connected products. Climo with its sensor technology is revolutionary and is much more compact with live data streaming
- Some of the agri sensors we are have been working on can help farmers get live data about the condition of the soil, combine that with weather data, the analytics can help us predict crops and soil conditions better than ever
- In healthcare, we are working on next-generation non-intrusive devices which can not only improve the lives of patients but increase the accuracy of disease detection. AI in the eye care fundus camera is trained to be more accurate while predicting the occurrence of diabetes while it cans a person retina
AIM: Do disruptive technologies take time to evolve? How so?
Bosch India’s innovation strategy is centred on a systematic approach towards identifying a market, technology trends and place bets to find the next disruptive innovation. New age technologies have the potential to disrupt multiple verticals allowing us to find intersection points, act as amplifiers and experiment with innovative business models. Disruptive technologies do take discipline in Innovation, deep understanding of technology and domain. Resource training and management also plays a key role.
AIM: Do you think India will outsource AI/IoT-related projects?
DS: Collaboration is key in the new digital era. In the whole digital ecosystem, there is never going to be one entity which will have all competencies and hence collaboration is the key. And collaboration can be cross borders too.
AIM: Tell us a little about your DNA Accelerator programme?
DS: Bosch India is leveraging its technical and business capabilities to support and encourage the startup ecosystem. This would lead India to become the hub of startup and innovation on the global map. We want to help the startups to grow by expanding their capabilities. DNA stands for:
- Discover: It is the starting phase to find startups in relevant defined scope areas which are of interest to Bosch. We schedule pitch days, hackathons and tech events to find relevant startups
- Nurture: This is an intensive accelerated growth program to help build capabilities and scale up startups from “Lab to Market”
- Align: Defining and structuring the engagement of startups with business units. This includes joint go-to-market approach, overseeing customer partnerships and attracting investments