Can Miami Survive Tech Recession and Stock Market Crash, Become Next Silicon Valley

The music is always too loud in Miami, but tech workers seem to love it anyway.

As the tech industry fanned out across the US over the past two years, a geographically liberated workforce found itself in new and unexpected places — like frivolous, beachy Miami. Where other cities have spent billions of dollars on incentives, planning, and research parks over decades to lure startups, Miami’s inchoate community was tweeted into existence in a matter of months.

Right now, the US tech sector is on tenterhooks as markets tumble, startup valuations crater, and tech layoffs are announced daily. The industry’s uncertain future raises a question: Can Miami parlay its recent success into a status as a globally competitive tech hub to someday rival Silicon Valley? Or will it turn into a cautionary tale about placing all your bets on a bubble?

The Miami miracle of migration

Ed Glaeser, an urban economist who wrote the book “Triumph of the City,” once told an interviewer that “the most successful economic development policy is to attract and retain smart people and then get out of their way.” Miami may not be the most obvious place to attract the type of people who would build a new Silicon Valley.

After all, as the venture capitalist Paul Graham wrote in 2006: “Most nerds like quieter pleasures. They like cafes instead of clubs; used bookshops instead of fashionable clothing shops; hiking instead of dancing.” Even some in Miami doubted the city could become a tech hub.

In 2013, the Knight Foundation, The Atlantic, and the urbanist Richard Florida held a conference to discuss the future of Miami’s economy. Named “Start-up City: Miami,” the gathering marked one of the city’s first attempts to brand itself as a transcontinental tech hub, but it was not well received by all the area’s leaders. Miami Beach’s mayor at the time, Phil Levine, unforgettably called the idea of a tech-driven Miami Beach “the dumbest idea in the world.” He believed that Miami Beach should play to its strengths: tourism and travel.

When Zappos’ CEO at the time, Tony Hsieh, the internet pioneer who helped revitalize downtown Las Vegas, took the stage during the conference, he asked the audience of Miamians, “How many opportunities do you have in a lifetime to help shape the future of a major city?” Nearly 10 years later, the city’s new contingent of tech disciples and policymakers are welcoming the challenge to create something in a place with no tech traditions.

“You could see the need for Miami to diversify,” Francis Suarez, Miami’s mayor since 2017, told me during an interview in March.

Suarez is one of the biggest reasons for Miami’s economic transformation. Using social-media buzz and livestreamed conversations with recognizable tech leaders over sugary Cuban espressos called cafecitos, Suarez called for investors, programmers, designers, and entrepreneurs to relocate to Miami’s shores. He has argued that the city has the ability to remake itself.

“We’re a relatively young city — 125 years old,” he said. “The modern Miami started in my lifetime.”

There’s no playbook for building a sustainable, long-term tech ecosystem using online publicity and peer pressure, but the early returns from Suarez’s constant promotion are encouraging. In the year following the start of the pandemic, the Miami-Fort Lauderdale region had the greatest inbound migration of software and IT workers of any US metro area, at 15.4% year over year, while the Bay Area fared the worst.

Miami was aided in its efforts by the snowglobe-shaking disruption of the pandemic. “Part of what made this moment possible were macro factors,” Suarez told me. Remote work empowered people to find places with a cheaper cost of living, better quality of life, lower taxes, and less stringent health protocols. Sunshine and socializing in a Sun Belt city became a temptation for many in New York City and San Francisco. And the Magic City, similar to other warm-weather cities, became a “have-it-all hub.”

“You’re starting to see this decentralization of talent in tech. I think Miami is well positioned to come out of that era as a dominant player,” Suarez told me. “Many of the people I talk to are saying, ‘We’ll build here, but we may hire from all over the country.'”

Peter Yared, a founder of the software startup InCountry, arrived in Miami from San Francisco in September 2020 after briefly considering Los Angeles. “People think that you move for taxes, but you don’t upend your life for them,” he told me. For Yared, as for many others, it was a combination of factors including governance and crime that turned him away from San Francisco and the “monoculture that had distilled” the city.

More than a flash in the pan

To be sure, Silicon Valley wasn’t successful just because it was a suburban area with nice weather. What fueled its rise as the center of the tech world were its competitive research institutions, friendly business and labor laws, access to venture capital, and web of legal, financial, and accounting firms ready to aid eager entrepreneurs. Plenty of cities have tried to follow in its footsteps — from Atlanta’s “Silicon Peach” to Salt Lake City’s “Silicon Slopes” — but have mostly ended up as promising but pale imitations.

Miami’s most distinguishing feature as a startup hub is its status as an international city — a crossroads for a variety of industries, events, and people. Its network of domestic and international flights and its proximity to Latin America make it a gateway for people and globalized markets. In 2019, more than 54% of residents of Miami-Dade County were immigrants, and immigrants held 61% of STEM jobs.

The city can capitalize on its title of the “capital of Latin America” and its existing industries — namely hospitality, aviation, and healthcare — to provide an economic base for the tech sector that could spur recombinant urban economic growth. With its density of hospitals and treatment centers, it can build up its biotechnology reputation, which the University of Miami’s life-sciences-and-technology park and incubator has ventured to do. And the robustness of the region’s tech economy may depend on expanding beyond crypto projects and into traditional industries and newer sectors such as climate technology.

It also has the advantage of being a vibrant city that can draw entrepreneurs, business celebrities, and startup CEOs from across the country to events. Back-to-back tech conferences and large-scale events like Miami Tech Week, the Bitcoin Conference, and eMerge Americas have brought in powerful people. And the city has become an alternative to New York and Las Vegas for some of the most voguish nonbusiness events including Art Basel and the Formula 1 ​​Grand Prix in early May.

Now that the idea of Miami as a tech hub has caught on, startup founders, developers, and venture capitalists are flocking to be part of it. “There’s a vanguard of interesting people all showing up at the same time,” Yared told me. “It’s what makes cities boom.”

Miami is also rapidly drawing in venture capital. In 2021, the value of venture-capital deals for Miami-based startups nearly quadrupled, reaching $4.6 billion overall, up from $1.2 billion in 2020 and right behind Austin. While the city ranks 12th in the country in terms of venture-capital funding, representing only 1.4% of the total amount raised in the US, the year-over-year growth is substantial.

SoftBank grew its Miami fund to $250 million, while Founders Fund, Atomic, and Silicon Valley Bank opened offices. As more funds relocate or expand their offices to Miami, other venture firms will be drawn into this vortex. And this convergence of capital makes Suarez confident that Miami “will be the main aggregation center of capital.” The growing white-shoe network of legal and accounting firms within the banking and financial-services sector is also poised to support the city’s growing tech sector.

Despite the recent precipitous drop in tech stocks, momentum doesn’t appear to be slowing. So far this year, startups in the Miami area have raised over $1.15 billion, according to PitchBook. Nationally, a record-breaking year in venture-capital fundraising has given way to sobering expectations of an industry pullback as public markets get hit hard and startup valuations slump.

Eventually, the macroeconomic environment may drag down Miami’s nascent tech economy, but with newly funded venture-capital firms needing to deploy capital, the fallout could be minor.

To make sure this rapid boom doesn’t result in a just-as-sudden bust, Miami will need to couple the tech cheerleading with more sustainable development. The city has to invest in nuts-and-bolts infrastructure, the kind that helps keep housing costs, homelessness, crime, and poverty low. And it must face down its most existential crisis: climate change.

The higher-education brain drain

The most glaring roadblock on Miami’s path to challenging Silicon Valley is brain drain and the lack of top-ranking applied sciences and research universities. Regional experts such as Alejandro Portes, a sociologist who has studied Miami’s economic history, have highlighted that the region’s top young people often depart for Boston, New York, or California for college. Keeping these students near home — during and after school — requires South Florida to have a top-tier engineering university.

“Higher ed is ripe for disruption. We are looking at higher-ed partnerships or at creating something completely new,” Suarez told me. He’s heading up a free, tech-oriented charter school to encourage young people toward tech.

Local universities are also aware of this need. Florida International University is constructing a $48 million facility to expand engineering programs, and it says that in the past four years it’s grown its computer-science enrollment by 60%, to about 8,000 students. Even with all this, Miami’s tech education pales in comparison to the roughly 18,000 science and engineering graduates in and near Silicon Valley in 2016 and the thousands more in software boot camps.

Research facilities are also critical for developing an innovative ecosystem. The benefits of research and development are hyperlocalized, meaning research benefits the community through local commercialization of new technologies before spreading nationally and internationally. And research has suggested that university spin-off companies are more likely to attract venture capital.

In a report by the National Science Foundation ranking colleges and universities by the number of utility patents developed through their research from 1969 to 2012, the highest South Florida institution ranked 29th, behind institutions in areas with much smaller populations. To boost that number, Miami could follow the example of New York City: In 2011, the city partnered with Cornell University and the Institute of Technology to build an engineering campus on an underutilized piece of land.

As these tech-talent pipelines form, however, companies based in Miami can draw on their proximity to Central and South American markets and labor, setting up remote teams in places like Mexico City and recruiting more diverse talent from abroad.

Can Miami fight the housing crisis and rising shorelines? 

Only a few years ago, Miami’s cost of living was just above the national average. But thanks to a precipitous jump in newcomers, Miami has become the most expensive housing market in the US, a May report from RealtyHop said. According to Redfin, the average rent in Miami increased by 34% over 2021, hitting an eye-watering $3,020.

The consumer price index for Greater Miami increased by 9.8% over the year to February; that figure was nearly 2 percentage points higher than in most parts of the country. How can Miami avoid the pitfalls of growth that accompanied the Bay Area’s rise, a phrase that local newspapers have pejoratively called the “San Francisco-ization” of Miami?

Suarez is transparent about the challenges Miami faces and the looming crisis of unaffordability. “We are not perfect and we have all of the challenges of major cities but we are at historic lows in homicides, unemployment and taxes. Much work to be done on affordability and education,” he tweeted in February. Despite the hot market, more units are being built, offering a positive, if imperfect, outlook as many residents are uprooted.

“We have in our pipeline 47,000 units in construction. That’s a 25% increase in dwelling units that we’re going to see over a two- to four-year period,” Suarez told me. For now, the housing crisis has not translated into homelessness; rates are at a 25-year low.

What’s more, with the exception of the pandemic spike, the unemployment rate, currently at 3%, has remained low in recent years, and wage growth has surged by more than in other metro areas recently — things that, taken together, may help alleviate the cost of living.

Just as pressing as housing issues, the crescive tides accompanying the climate crisis may affect the city’s growth over the next several decades. In 2017, voters approved a $400 million “Miami Forever” bond to help protect against rising sea levels and flooding.

The city in recent years has embraced advisors from the Netherlands to help it adapt. Over the next two decades, the sea level is expected to rise by 11 inches around Miami, threatening billions of dollars in real estate if the city isn’t able to adapt effectively. Undoubtedly, the region will need to invest substantially more toward mitigation efforts.

It takes time to build

For Miami and its newly minted tech hub to continue growing at the current pace, the city will need to address these imminent risks and the challenges of responding to the climate crisis and the second-order effects of growth. Greater Miami, by various metrics, consistently hovers between 10th and 12th among US metros for economic output, number of knowledge workers, and annual venture capital, which together provide a picture of Miami’s tech economy: Miami is midsized, but it’s growing fiercely.

The city has embraced a talent-focused and place-based policymaking approach to building a tech hub. And it has many of the ingredients for a hub that’s perfect for a remote-work era: a high quality of life with many social opportunities to counteract the siloing effects of working from home. But the one factor in Silicon Valley’s success that Miami still needs is time.

“We’re a 10-year overnight-success story,” Suarez told me. That is far short of the decades it took for Silicon Valley to mature. It’s clear that Miami’s star is rising, but to become an entrenched part of the tech industry, the city will need to weather economic storms like what we’re seeing today. Reading the coffee grounds from cafecitos, there is a growing chance that Miami could very well become a superstar city with an international tech hub.

Emil Skandul is a writer and founder of digital innovation firm Capitol Foundry. He is working on a book about tech hubs.

Source: Can Miami Survive Tech Recession and Stock Market Crash, Become Next Silicon Valley

More contents:

Better Broadband: CableLabs Showcases 10G, The Cable Connection of The Future

There’s something in the air in Louisville, Colorado or more specifically, in the wires. Humming along miles of networking cabling, zipping through signal repeaters: It’s the future of the Internet.

On Thursday morning at the home of CableLabs — which bills itself as “the leading innovation and R&D lab for the cable industry” — network engineers and representatives from some of the country’s top internet providers came together to showcase some of the fastest speeds they’ve ever transmitted: 8Gbps downloads and 5Gpbs uploads, using the world’s only DOCSIS 4.0 modem and a series of networking technologies that CableLabs calls 10G.

“Besides the people in the labs, nobody has seen this,” said Curtis Knittle, CableLabs vice president of wired technology.

In a closed showroom before a handful of people, engineers and tech experts showed off a demo seemingly worthy of a high-school AV club: gobs of networking cable linking a unique, handmade modem via a series of amplifiers and repeaters. It was a showcase for 10G, the next great leap for broadband internet access, and the blazing, 10-fold increase in speeds promised to homes across America.

Crucially, 10G promises dramatically faster speeds across existing hardware. While you probably subscribe to a 300Mbps or 600Mbps service through your cable provider, your modem can do better – but only so far. Existing connections max out at a theoretical 1.5Gbps. 10G tech will amp it up, and engineers won’t need to dig up the street near you to boost your broadband.

In theory, anyway, although the cable companies themselves will need to install an updated amplifier or two along the way to your house and you may need a new modem.

“We’re super excited about what’s coming,” said Stephanie Michko-Beale, EVP and Chief Technology Officer for Charter Communications. “This suite of technologies is transformational.”

“We’re certainly very enthusiastic about what we’ve seen,” said Len Barlik, EVP and Chief Technology Officer for Cox Communications. “From a customer experience perspective, we know there’s a lot of demand for this moving forward.”

In a press release announcing the tests, Elad Nafshi, EVP & Chief Network Officer at Comcast Cable, echoed their comments and touted the advancements. “These 10G technologies represent the fastest, most efficient path to deliver multigigabit symmetrical speeds at scale everywhere, not just in select neighborhoods or towns.”

“The pace of 10G innovation is only accelerating, and Internet users around the world will reap the benefits.”

When asked, none of the company representatives were willing to state a timeline for release of new DOCSIS 4.0 modems or the 10G service, but that’s to be expected: The tech was being shown off for the first time. It’s likely years down the road. So what is it exactly?

Knittle from CableLabs called 10G a “holistic umbrella” — more than just a new modem or better coax cable. There’s DOCSIS 4.0, a new standard for the cable modem. DOCSIS 3 and its 3.1 evolution have been growing and changing for over a decade; TechRadar wrote about its promise back in 2010. DOCSIS 4.0 or full-duplex DOCSIS was officially released in 2017, but good luck finding a modem or a carrier to support it yet.

The 4.0 spec brings those blazing speeds, most notably the upload. You’ve probably noticed that your upload speeds are dramatically slower than your download speeds, and it’s not just your computer. 4.0 doesn’t quite bring parity, but it will significantly increase the theoretical maximums to 6Gbps, by sending uploads and downloads along the same spectrum within the fiber optic cables.

10G technology also brings new technologies to boost reliability and security, CableLabs says, and decreases the latency in connections, which should facilitate gaming, interactive AR (that metaverse thing everyone’s talking about), and other internet activities that rely on precision.

Jeremy Kaplan

By: Jeremy Kaplan

After 25 years covering the technology industry, Jeremy Kaplan is a familiar face in the media world. As Content Director for TechRadar, he oversees product development and quality. He was formerly Editor in Chief of Digital Trends, where he transformed a niche publisher into one of the fastest growing properties in digital media. Before that, he spent half a decade at one of the largest news agencies in the world, and cut his teeth in magazine business, long before the birth of the iPhone. In 2019, he was named to the FOLIO: 100, which honors publishing professionals making an industry-wide impact.

Source: Better broadband: CableLabs showcases 10G, the cable connection of the future | TechRadar

Overwatch 2 PvP beta glitch isn’t letting players log in – here’s why

New PS5 update is out now – and it’s a game-changer

5 shows Netflix canceled that deserved another season

The next Amazon Kindle could be a game-changer if it gets this brand-new tech

Your Fitbit is getting a major new heart health feature

.

More Remote Working Apps:

https://quintexcapital.com/?ref=arminham     Quintex Capital

https://www.genesis-mining.com/a/2535466   Genesis Mining

 http://www.bevtraders.com/?ref=arminham   BevTraders

https://www.litefinance.com/?uid=929237543  LiteTrading

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/369164  prime stocks

  https://jvz3.com/c/202927/361015  content gorilla

  https://jvz8.com/c/202927/366443  stock rush  

 https://jvz1.com/c/202927/373449  forrk   

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/194909  keysearch  

 https://jvz4.com/c/202927/296191  gluten free   

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/286851  diet fitness diabetes  

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/213027  writing job  

 https://jvz6.com/c/202927/108695  postradamus

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/372094  stoodaio

 https://jvz4.com/c/202927/358049  profile mate  

 https://jvz6.com/c/202927/279944  senuke  

 https://jvz8.com/c/202927/54245   asin   

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/370227  appimize

 https://jvz8.com/c/202927/376524  super backdrop

 https://jvz6.com/c/202927/302715  audiencetoolkit

 https://jvz1.com/c/202927/375487  4brandcommercial

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/375358  talkingfaces

 https://jvz6.com/c/202927/375706  socifeed

 https://jvz2.com/c/202927/184902  gaming jobs

 https://jvz6.com/c/202927/88118   backlink indexer  https://jvz1.com/c/202927/376361  powrsuite  

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/370472  tubeserp  

https://jvz4.com/c/202927/343405  PR Rage  

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/371547  design beast  

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/376879  commission smasher

 https://jvz2.com/c/202927/376925  MT4Code System

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/375959  viral dash

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/376527  coursova

 https://jvz4.com/c/202927/144349  fanpage

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/376877  forex expert  

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/374258  appointomatic

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/377003  woocommerce

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/377005  domainname

 https://jvz8.com/c/202927/376842  maxslides

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/376381  ada leadz

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/333637  eyeslick

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/376986  creaitecontentcreator

https://jvz4.com/c/202927/376095  vidcentric

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/374965  studioninja

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/374934  marketingblocks https://jvz3.com/c/202927/372682  clipsreel  

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/372916  VideoEnginePro

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/144577  BarclaysForexExpert

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/370806  Clientfinda

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/375550  Talkingfaces

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/370769  IMSyndicator

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/283867  SqribbleEbook

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/376524  superbackdrop

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/376849  VirtualReel

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/369837  MarketPresso

https://jvz1.com/c/202927/342854  voiceBuddy

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/377211  tubeTargeter

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/377557  InstantWebsiteBundle

https://jvz6.com/c/202927/368736  soronity

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/337292  DFY Suite 3.0 Agency+ information

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/291061  VideoRobot Enterprise

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/327447  Klippyo Kreators

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/324615  ChatterPal Commercial

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/299907  WP GDPR Fix Elite Unltd Sites

https://jvz8.com/c/202927/328172  EngagerMate

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/342585  VidSnatcher Commercial

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/292919  myMailIt

https://jvz3.com/c/202927/320972  Storymate Luxury Edition

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/320466  iTraffic X – Platinum Edition

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/330783  Content Gorilla One-time

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/301402  Push Button Traffic 3.0 – Brand New

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/321987  SociCake Commercial https://jvz2.com/c/202927/289944  The Internet Marketing

 https://jvz2.com/c/202927/297271  Designa Suite License

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/310335  XFUNNELS FE Commercial 

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/291955  ShopABot

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/312692  Inboxr

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/343635  MediaCloudPro 2.0 – Agency

 https://jvz2.com/c/202927/353558  MyTrafficJacker 2.0 Pro+

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/365061  AIWA Commercial

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/357201  Toon Video Maker Premium

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/351754  Steven Alvey’s Signature Series

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/344541  Fade To Black

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/290487  Adsense Machine

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/315596  Diddly Pay’s DLCM DFY Club

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/355249  CourseReel Professional

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/309649  SociJam System

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/263380  360Apps Certification

 https://jvz2.com/c/202927/359468  LocalAgencyBox

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/377557  Instant Website Bundle

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/377194  GMB Magic Content

https://jvz2.com/c/202927/376962  PlayerNeos VR

Now You Can Rent a Robot Worker For Less Than Paying a Human

Polar Manufacturing has been making ​metal ​hinges, locks, and brackets ​in south Chicago for more than 100 years. Some of the company’s metal presses—hulking great machines that loom over a worker—date from the 1950s. Last year, to meet rising demand amid a shortage of workers, Polar hired its first robot employee.

The robot arm performs a simple, repetitive job: lifting a piece of metal into a press, which then bends the metal into a new shape. And like a person, the robot worker gets paid for the hours it works.

​Jose Figueroa​, who manages Polar’s production line, says the robot, which is leased from a company called Formic, costs the equivalent of $8 per hour, compared with a minimum wage of $15 per hour for a human employee. Deploying the robot allowed a human worker to do different work, increasing output, Figueroa says.

“Smaller companies sometimes suffer because they can’t spend the capital to invest in new technology,” Figueroa says. “We’re just struggling to get by with the minimum wage increase.”

The fact that Polar didn’t need to pay $100,000 upfront to buy the robot, and then spend more money to get it programmed, was crucial. Figueroa says that he’d like to see 25 robots on the line within five years. He doesn’t envisage replacing any of the company’s 70 employees, but says Polar may not need to hire new workers.

Formic buys standard robot arms, and leases them along with its own software. They’re among a small but growing number of robots finding their way into workplaces on a pay-as-you-go basis.

The pandemic has led to shortages of workers across numerous industries, but many smaller firms are reluctant to write big checks for automation.“Cost declines are great for the diffusion of a technology.” Andrew McAfee, principle research scientist, MIT

“Anything that can help reduce labor count or the need for labor is obviously a plus at this particular time,” says Steve Chmura, chief operating officer at Georgia Nut, a confectionery company in Skokie, Illinois, that has been struggling to find employees and also rents robots from Formic.

The robot-as-employee approach could help automation spread into smaller businesses more rapidly by changing the economics. Companies such as Formic see an opportunity to build large businesses by serving many small firms. Many are mining the data they collect to help refine their products and improve customers’ operations.

Shahan Farshchi, an investor in Formic, likens the state of robotics today to computing before personal computers took off, when only rich companies could afford to invest in massive computer systems that required considerable expertise to program and maintain. Personal computing was enabled by companies including Intel and Microsoft that made the technology cheap and easy to use. “We’re entering that same time now with robots,” Farshchi says.

Robots have been taking on new jobs in recent years as the technology becomes more capable as well as easier and cheaper to deploy. Some hospitals use robots to deliver supplies and some offices employ robotic security guards. The companies behind these robots often provide them on a rental basis.

Jeff Burnstein, president of the Association for Advancing Automation, an industry body, says rising demand for automation among smaller companies is driving interest in robotics as a service. The approach has seen particular traction among warehouse fulfillment firms, Burnstein says.

It might eventually become normal to pay robots to do all sorts of jobs, Burnstein says, pointing to RoboTire, a startup developing a robot capable of switching the tires on a car. “As more and more companies automate in different industries, you’re seeing more receptivity to robotics as a service,” he says. Search our artificial intelligence database and discover stories by sector, tech, company, and more.

The International Federation of Robotics, an organization that tracks robot trends globally, projected in October that the number of robots sold last year would grow 13 percent. One market analysis from 2018 projected the number of industrial robots that are leased or that rely on subscription software will grow from 4,442 units in 2016 to 1.3 million in 2026.

“Cost declines are great for the diffusion of a technology,” says Andrew McAfee, a principle research scientist at MIT who studies the economic implications of automation.

McAfee says robots themselves have become cheaper and more user friendly in recent years thanks to the falling cost of sensors and other components, a trend that he expects will continue. “They are the peace dividend of the smartphone wars,” he says.

Dustin Pederson, CFO of Locus Robotics, a company that leases robots for use in warehouses, says his company’s revenue has grown sixfold over the past year amid rising demand for ecommerce and a shortage of workers. “To be able to step in with a subscription model makes automation a lot friendlier,” Pederson says. “And we are still early on in the overall adoption of robotics in the warehousing industry.”

It’s unclear—even to economists—what impact the growing use of robots will have on the supply of jobs. Research from Daron Acemoglu and Pascual Restrepo, economists at MIT and Boston University, respectively, suggests that the adoption of robots from 1990 to 2020 resulted in fewer jobs and lower wages overall.

But one study of robot adoption in Japanese nursing homes, from January 2021, found that the technology helped create more jobs by allowing for more flexibility in working practices. And another study, from 2019, also found that robot adoption among Canadian businesses had often affected managers more than workers by changing business processes.

Lynn Wu, an associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and a coauthor on the 2019 study, says she expects robots paid by the hour to become more common. But she notes that in contrast to many information technologies, few businesses know how to use robots. “It’s going to take longer than people think,” she says.

For now, most robots found in industrial settings are relatively dumb, following precise movements repetitively. Robots are gradually becoming smarter thanks to use of artificial intelligence, but it remains very challenging for machines to respond to complex environments or uncertainty. Some researchers believe that adding AI to robots will prompt companies to reorganize in ways that have a bigger impact on jobs.

Saman Farid, CEO of Formic, says the company hopes to position itself to be able to offer more capable robots to all sorts of companies in the future. “Robots are going to be able to do a lot more tasks over the next 5 to 10 years,” Farid says. “As machine learning gets better, and you get to a higher level of reliability, then we’ll start implementing those.”

By:

Will Knight is a senior writer for WIRED, covering artificial intelligence. He was previously a senior editor at MIT Technology Review, where he wrote about fundamental advances in AI and China’s AI boom. Before that, he was an editor and writer at New Scientist. He studied anthropology and journalism in the UK before turning his attention to machines.

Source: Now You Can Rent a Robot Worker—for Less Than Paying a Human  | WIRED

.

More Great WIRED Stories

US-China Trade Tensions Threaten Europe’s Biggest Tech Company

Plenty of places claim they are Europe’s answer to Silicon Valley: Stockholm boasts the most unicorns per capita, and London is the continent’s VC hub. But only the small Dutch town of Veldhoven—whose population numbers 45,000—is home to the closest thing Europe has to a big tech giant.

From its unassuming base near the Belgian border, ASML, a company that builds the machines that make semiconductor chips, has mushroomed to become a critical cog in the global technology industry. At the end of 2021, it was named Europe’s largest public tech company by market cap, boosted by the pandemic demand for devices and the global chip shortage.

Spun out from Dutch electronics giant Philips in 1984, ASML enables other companies to make semiconductor chips—the technological brains in phones, cars, computers, and smart homes. Experts describe ASML as a bottleneck:

The company claims it has between 80 and 85 percent share of the total market for lithography systems that make semiconductors. When it comes to the most advanced type of chipmaking lithography machine, known as extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV), that market share surges to 100 percent.

But despite ASML’s recent momentum, there is one area of uncertainty on the horizon. As a result of trade tensions between Washington and Beijing, the company has been blocked from selling its most advanced machines to China.

Although the country currently only sells 7.6 percent of the world’s chips, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association, this number is growing fast and chips are one of seven technologies Beijing has targeted for development. Attempts to block China from the global supply chain has created concern that the country will rush to develop its own version of ASML, threatening the Dutch company’s outsized influence over the semiconductor market.

Thanks to the gamble ASML took in the 1990s to pursue the development of EUV technology, which uses tiny rays of light to carve patterns on the silicon pieces that form semiconductor chips, the company’s dominance in this area is currently unchallenged. ASML estimates its most advanced technology is so complex, it would take at least 15 years for others to replicate.

“Several of the companies that were competitive [in the 1990s] decided not to take the risk investing in EUV because it seemed like it would be so difficult, so expensive and possibly never work,” says Chris Miller, assistant professor of international history at Tufts University, who is writing a book on the geopolitical history of the computer chip.

As a result of that bet, ASML’s valuation has swollen to over $300 billion and its share price has more than doubled since the start of 2020. Speculation is mounting that it could become Europe’s first company to be valued above $1 trillion.

The shift to EUV was long and expensive. The company had to persuade its customers — including Intel, Samsung and the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company—to buy stakes in the company so there was enough money to fund the research. By the time it was able to launch its first commercial EUV machines in 2017, the process had cost $9 billion.

But the payoff was huge. It is now the only company able to supply EUV machines, which make the most advanced type of chips found in newer phones and games consoles, to industry giants like TSMC or Intel. As of September 2021, the company had sold 125 EUV machines. That might not sound like much, but there aren’t a lot of companies that are capable of manufacturing the most advanced type of chips using these machines and ASML sells them for more than $100 million each.

But a political maelstrom could hit ASML’s growth plans. The company’s breakthrough in EUVs coincided with another event: Donald Trump’s arrival in the White House. In 2018, when ASML received an order for an EUV machine from a Chinese customer, reported to be the Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation or SMIC, the Trump administration lobbied the Dutch government to block ASML from fulfilling it.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Charles Kupperman, Trump’s national security advisor at the time, told Dutch diplomats in 2019 that ASML machines wouldn’t work without American components and the White House had the authority to restrict those parts being exported to the Netherlands. ASML’s EUV machines contain lasers made by San Diego based Cymer.

The Biden administration has shown no sign of changing tack and the Dutch government has yet to grant ASML the licence to sell its machinery to China. “Because we don’t have that permit, we’re not able to ship EUVs into China,” says ASML chief finance officer Roger Dassen, who says the company strongly supports a “global chip making ecosystem”.

The company declined to comment on the potential value of the market in China if it was allowed to sell EUV machines there. However the country is still a major market for ASML’s older products and Dassen said at the Morgan Stanley TMT conference in November that it expects around €2 billion ($2.6 billion) in sales to China in both 2021 and 2022.

Whether restrictions on ASML’s exports to China will be expanded to cover more of the company’s products remains uncertain, says Paul Triolo, managing director for global technology policy at consultancy Eurasia Group.

He believes the US is concerned that advanced chips could end up in Chinese military technology but he says there has never been an open discussion about the national security gain versus the impacts on the semiconductor industry. “The industry is frustrated,” he adds. “[They] want the justification to be clearly articulated so they understand what their obligations are.”

In April 2021, a report by the semiconductor industry association and Boston Consulting Group warned that export rules have encouraged China to develop its own alternative chip machinery manufacturers. Shanghai Micro Electronics Equipment is one company being positioned as Beijing’s alternative to ASML.

This is a concern for ASML, according to CEO Peter Wenninck, who in an interview with Politico said that “in 15 years’ time they’ll be able to do it all by themselves — and their market [for European suppliers] will be gone.” But Dassen claims that if the company is locked out of one part of the world, the other part of the world would still need chips. “At ASML, we don’t really care what chips are being made as long as they are being made,” he says.

The main concern is the risk of being dethroned—whether that’s by a Chinese competitor or one from elsewhere. In the case of ASML, it’s “whether they really have focused on the right technology and if there might be some disruptive technologies which they haven’t foreseen,” says Henk Volberda, professor of strategy and innovation at the University of Amsterdam’s business school, who believes a potential disruptor for the company could be photonics.

“With this technology it is possible to produce chips that work on light (photonics) instead of electricity (electrons),” he says. To guard against future competitors, ASML says it is heavily investing in innovation. In 2021, the company said it spent 13.7 percent of sales on research and development, with that number expected to go up to 14 percent in 2022.

But the critical nature of R&D in the industry is exactly what makes the US-China trade tensions such a threat, according to Triolo. “If the US tries to expand controls and target companies that are potential customers of ASML to a broader degree, that could really cut off the China market more seriously,” he says.

ASML can’t sell its most advanced machines to China, but it can sell its other technology there. Around 30 percent of ASML’s sales came from China in 2020. An escalation of trade tensions could therefore hit revenues and undermine the company’s ability to carry out R&D in an industry where it is incredibly costly to play catch up, Triolo says.

“Is there enough of a market in other countries for them to continue to compete and derive that R&D benefit from the revenue?” he asks. “The jury’s still out on that.”

By:

Morgan Meaker is a senior writer at WIRED covering European business. Before that, she was a technology reporter at The Telegraph and also worked for Dutch magazine De Correspondent. In 2019 she won Technology Journalist of the Year at the Words by Women Awards. She was born in Scotland, lives in London, and is a graduate of City University’s International Journalism MA program.

Source: US-China Trade Tensions Threaten Europe’s Biggest Tech Company | WIRED

.More Great WIRED Stories

Forrk The GrubHub-like’ Mobile Restaurant Menu & Ordering System

Those restaurants that have had no choice but to use GrubHub & UberEats systems are drowning in the high fees these big tech companies charge. They are DESPERATE to do mobile ordering & pickup without giving up 30% of their profit to these exploitative systems.

That’s why we’ve spent two years coding the ultimate solution to keep amazing local restaurants open and you get paid monthly for doing so. Forrk is a GROUNDBREAKING cloud app that creates everything restaurants need to survive and thrive in a post-pandemic world.

  • Set up online ordering for restaurants who can’t afford to pay huge fees to UberEats, GrubHub, Deliveroo and more.
  • Create zero-contact menus and table payments for customers to feel safer when dining in.
  • Save restaurants from closing, while you get a monthly paycheck as their local marketing superhero and more….

The Forrk lead system will show you how to find prequalifed local restaurants to sell Forrk services to. Find the best clients that need mobile websites, ordering systems, alternatives to GrubHub, and more.

Then, customize, print-out, or embed a QR-code touchless menu that goes to a mobile ordering system for the restaurant client. When scanned, the QR-code will load the restaurant’s menu for their customers to view and order from on their phone whether in the restaurant or from home.

In addition to their smart menu and ordering system, Forrk can create a fully-fleged mobile site for the client, too. Pick from DFY templates and host the site on Forrk’s servers.

Then, populate their smart menu with the restaurant’s food items and menu deals. Build high-converting intelligent food listings complete with descriptions, reviews, FAQs, videos, deals, and more like McDonald’s or KFC do to boost profits.

Then, integrate the client’s PayPal, Stripe, RazorPay, or other payment processor including manual pay systems to take no-contact payment. Once an order is placed, the restaruant can monitor it and even track order delivery status of mobile or pick-up delivery orders.

You’re getting the Agency License as a special bonus today only. This means you can give access to the software for a monthly fee, and let the client do the game creation and lead set-up FOR YOU.

Easily charge $500-$2000 per month for access. Just 2-3 of these clients and you can have a thriving business you can run from the comfort of your home.

Source: http://forrk.co

%d bloggers like this: