VivaTech is Europe’s biggest startup and tech event. The sixth edition took place June 15-18, 2022, at the Expo Porte de Versailles in Paris and online. The conference attracted the world’s most innovative actors in tech and its related fields. As in past years, its aim is to ignite positive change in both business and society.
What follows is an executive summary of some key points made during a few of the conference’s many informative sessions.
Metaverse and AR-VR
Evan Spiegel, Co-Founder and CEO, Snap Inc.
Snap Inc. aspires to reinvent the camera in a way that improves the way people communicate. It uses augmented reality (AR) to make video interchanges more personal and expressive.
- It used to be that cameras made memories. But with the introduction of the internet, they have evolved into the most common way of talking.
- The point of film cameras was to create high-quality images to remind us of where we have been or whom we have seen. Snap, however, focuses on speed and expressiveness. Snap lenses allow users to overlay a streaming image with their own perspective and personality.
- There is a significant difference between augmented reality, which enhances the world around us, and the metaverse, which replaces the world around us with an entirely virtual world.
The Future of Healthcare
Sumbul Desai, MD, VP of Health, Apple
Apple has been working with clinical partners—including Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the American Heart Association, and Johns Hopkins University—to conduct health studies and advance clinical product development. Among the many consumer health tools available on the Apple Watch and iPhone are the recently launched Health Sharing and Walking Steadiness features.
- Technological improvement is needed in the health care industry to improve accessibility and scale up resources.
- Rather than creating new healthcare technologies simply because we can, we should focus on those technologies that serve a meaningful purpose.
- The health team at Apple is looking to place patients at the center of their own health care by giving them data while simultaneously grounding that data in privacy.
- The health team is also considering new ways to use technology to enhance the relationship between patients and physicians.
- Although preventative medicine is the best long-term solution to the problems of public health, we must nevertheless be mindful that preventive medicine is of little use to people once they are sick.
On the Path Forward for AI
Yann LeCun, VP and Chief AI Scientist, Meta, and Silver Professor of Computer Science, NYU Tandon School of Engineering
LeCun works primarily in the fields of machine learning, computer vision, and computational neuroscience.
- The question isn’t whether artificial intelligence systems will ever be smarter than humans. In some senses, they are already smarter than humans now.
- Specialized AI systems can already perform specific tasks faster and more accurately than humans.
- In the future, the range of those systems will likely expand to all domains.
Making Things Worth Making
Tony Fadell, Principal, Future Shape
Rahaf Harfoush, Executive Director, Red Thread Institute of Digital Culture
After leading the Apple team that created the first 18 generations of the iPod and the first three generations of the iPhone and then founding Nest, Fadell now coaches deep-tech startups. A member of France’s National Digital Council, Harfoush focuses on the intersections between emerging technologies and digital culture.
- The havoc that misinformation and disinformation have wreaked on recent history demonstrate that modern technologies can reprogram the human brain very quickly and very effectively.
- As AI becomes more powerful, this phenomenon will likely intensify. But the tools we have today are already extremely worrisome.
- Don’t wait for someone else’s technology to solve your problems for you. Revolutionize the world yourself.
- If you are not taking risks and sometimes failing, then you are not risking enough.
Accelerating the Digital Future of Automotive
Luca de Meo, CEO, Renault Group
Cristiano Amon, President and CEO, Qualcomm
According to recent studies, automotive software currently accounts for ten percent of the cost of a new car. By 2030 that figure is expected to rise to forty percent.
- Car companies are becoming technology companies.
- Rather than one being applied to the other, automotive hardware and software are now being developed jointly.
- In the future, cars will become part of the web and the cloud.
- Aided by advances in machine learning, cars will soon learn from their drivers. For that reason, a three-year-old car will serve its driver better than a new one because it will have adjusted to the owner’s driving style.
The Future of Beauty Is Powered by Tech
Nicolas Hieronimus, CEO, L'Oréal
L’Oreal believes that the future of the beauty industry will be powered by technology. Its specific goals include:
- personalizing beauty
- using technology to recommend products according to the customer’s needs and emotions
- allowing customers to sample new products virtually
- providing virtual dermatological care
- improving products
- making the beauty sector more inclusive
- transitioning beauty to the metaverse
LVMH Boosts Luxury Experiences Through Data-Driven Personalization
Michael David, Chief Omnichannel Officer, LVMH
Franck Le Moal, CIO, LVMH
Soumia Hadjali, Chief Digital Officer for Europe and the Middle East, Sephora
Etienne Bégué, Chief Digital Officer, Make Up For Ever
Luxury goods evoke old-world associations with authenticity, legacy, and savoir-faire. They most certainly do not bring data-driven digital technologies to mind, and yet these are the technologies upon which the purveyors of these goods increasingly rely.
- Strong platforms provide clients with product knowledge at their fingertips.
- Knowledge of the client provided by data systems enables vendors to personalize recommendations and thus increase client satisfaction.
- Especially in the luxury market, it is important to replace “it has to” with “what if…”
Finally in the Spotlight: Commerce Media
Antoine Borde, Global VP, eCommerce, Danone
Duncan Painter, CEO, Ascential
Quentin George, Partner, McKinsey & Co.
The transformative changes that have taken place in the retail space over these past few years have disrupted consumer behavior and led, in particular, to upheaval in the relationship between the buyers and sellers of advertising. As advertisers invest more and more money in the technologies of data acquisition, the marketing of products will be reshaped as well.
- In the retail space, information is power.
- Accessing consumer data on a massive scale will soon be the sine qua non of marketing.