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'Internet Glasses, Self-Drive Cars, See-Thru Tabs By 2020'

By Oonagh Reidy | Tuesday | 02/04/2013

Cars that drive themselves, iPads that roll up like a newspaper and fridges that message you when you have run out of milk: this is our tech future, says Telstra.

Telstra's CTO has revealed a vision for Australia by 2020 which will be radically different to what we know today.

"This will be a world where each device in the home, car and environment talks to each other," says Telstra's Chief Technology Officer, Dr Hugh Bradlow.

There will be computer chips and internet in everything from your oven to your car, and will be "disruptive" technology.

"Imagine your smart fridge automatically generating a shopping list which is filled by your local supermarket and delivered to your door, or hopping into your self-driving car that determines the quickest route to work, finds you a car park and parks your car simply via voice control."

Soon, we'll be living in a world where our connected devices will have near-field communication technology  (NFC) (already built into some smartphones, which allows device to 'talk' to each other) and sensors that drive smart homes, smart transport and smart environment.

Currently there are 50 million connections between people and devices in Australia, but by 2020 there will be 240 million.

Cities will be far more efficient as smart transport systems will enable public transport, traffic authorities, emergency services and cars to talk to each other.

There will also be cloud connected cars with auto sensing and geo-mapping, which will be able to drive themselves.

Google is already testing self driving cars and also plans to sell Google Glass connected to the web with real time info, soon.

This "disruptive" technology will also change the way we shop and real-time morphing technology will allow consumers try on a pair of jeans virtually from online retailers like eBay simply by using an app.

"Smart phones have changed the way we browse, research and shop and that is set to continue," said Dr Bradlow.

- Page Break -
And by 2030,  the number of  connected devices will have expanded to 1 trillion.

At work, there will be an app for everything and more systems than ever connected to the cloud, accessible from anywhere.

On the health side, waiting rooms will be non-existent as doctors will be able to 'virtually' reach through the screen during a video call to assess a patient's heart rate and blood pressure - and even run virtual brain scans.

"The digital economy has taken off and the next wave of change promises to be even more disruptive."

But Australia is "well positioned to ride the wave," says Telstra CTO.

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