Zit Seng's Blog

A Singaporean's technology and lifestyle blog

iExperience at Esplanade Xchange

The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore’s (IDA) Infocomm Experience Centre (iExperience) has set up shop at Esplanade Xchange since 2010. If you’re like me, you perhaps have not been there before, or even heard about it. I’ve not actually stepped foot into Esplanade Xchange until recently, even though I’ve walked past its entrance several times when I made my way from CitiyLink Mall to Suntec City.

Despite still being relatively new, iExperience recently underwent a makeover to better attract, pull in, and engage visitors. What is iExperience about?

iExperience is a showcase that aims to educate visitors via hands-on experience with the possibilities presented by the Next Generation National Broadband Network (NGNBN), including possible next generation services that leverage next generation technologies that encompass our daily lives.

That’s a mouthful of words. The key message is that it wants to show you what you can do now, and in the future, with a networked Singapore.

Over a decade ago, we had OneNet and Singapore One. Who still remembers that? Well, they jumpstarted Singapore onto a national-scale broadband network. IDA’s Intelligent Nation 2015 Masterplan (iN2015) takes us to the next level. One of its key deliverables is the national fibre broadband network, which is a key enabler for many other services and applications.

So what’s there to see at iExperience? First off, there’s this classroom that’s built for distance or virtual learning.

You might recognize the two surface table sort of gadgets in there. If you’re an IT techie who’s adequately up-to-speed with developing technologies and applications, this is probably not going to be so foreign to you.

The next display is about the NGNBN, and how fibre broadband is brought into your home or business. I posted about this previously (Inside Singapore’s OpenNet), but this has still nevertheless become more of an interest to me because I’m just about getting fibre installed in my home.

If you’re also planning to get fibre into your home, you’ll learn a lot from visiting iExperience. There are guides on-hand to explain things to you, and you might prefer to listen to them then to sales rep from the broadband resellers.

There’s a Near Field Communication (NFC) demonstration too. Something new is promised to be coming up in the area of retail, and it’s not the same as the NFC payments that was recently also announced by IDA as having gone live.

I wonder, why not work with QR Codes, since just about every smartphone is probably already capable of interacting with QR Codes today?

There are also other demonstration areas to showcase, for example, “life size” video conferencing.

An interesting exhibit that caught my attention was the “museum” area. Yeah. I was from the Apple ][ era. Yeah, that’s like 1980s. Many kids have never seen these stuffs.

There were modems too… like the US Robotics. I remember the days of dial-up BBSes. The things that the Internet generation never knew about!

If you happen to be passing through Esplanade Xchange, just go through iExperience to take a look. It’s free entry, and you can show yourself around if you don’t feel like being guided.

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