Sweden-based telecom device manufacturer Ericsson has bought the workforce Niche AI for its Bengaluru-based artificial intelligence centre. Ericsson began its India wing of Global Artificial Intelligence Accelerator (GAIA) in 2018 to create open-source solutions to modernise telecom network, deploying the power of AI and machine learning.
“We are looking at both organic hiring, one by one through recruitment off the market, as well as what you might call as inorganic, which is more through acquisitions and acquihires (acquiring only talents). One such company that we have acquired is Niche AI,” Sanjeev Tyagi, Head of Ericsson R&D Bengaluru told PTI. Ericsson has plans to have a team of around 300 highly qualified engineers in GAIA by end of 2019 of which half are expected to be located in India. Ericsson says it is looking to acquire talents from different companies for GAIA and not their assets like patents, clients etc. The financial details of Niche AI acquisition were not disclosed.
The company’s management says that as 5G technology will begin expanding fast, there will be a big reach of the internet of things devices, which can be properly managed only through AI and ML-like technologies and for which GAIA is creating solutions. “The exponential growth in IoT devices will mean that the traditional methods of managing networks are no longer going to scale and that is an area where we are going to need self-organising, self-healing, self-governing networks using AI and ML. We’re also looking at leveraging machine learning techniques to optimize the volume of signalling needed between a 5G handset and the radio base station to conserve battery life,” Sanjeev Tyagi told PTI.
Ericsson has been been evaluating companies based on size, their core competence, the capabilities of the engineering team, cultural fit, and several other parameters. Niche AI was one company that the Ericsson found suitable on all fronts, as per the announcement.
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