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UK digital economy catapulted into the future

January 26, 2012

By Colin Mann

Government investment in technology and innovation will enable Britain’s world leading digital businesses to benefit from future advances in technology and help them bring new products to the marketplace, UK Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced.

The new Connected Digital Economy Catapult centre will be a hub for the best innovations in the digital sector, focusing on where new advances can be made in areas such as:

  • addressing the challenges and opportunities of building a sustainable digital media and content business.
  • researching the impact of new technologies, such as augmented reality, will have on existing platforms and the potential infrastructure changes needed to support them.
  • looking at how our devices, our clothes, our cars, and other consumer goods become better connected to enhance the physical nature of our lives.

The Connected Digital Economy Catapult will also help transfer knowledge and experience from the digital industries to non-digital businesses and help them see the value that it could add to their business.

The music industry went through dramatic changes when it embraced digital technologies, it also experienced a great number of challenges particularly around intellectual property. Today, businesses are making similar changes in industries such as media and retail, which will benefit from the experience the music industry can provide, it is suggested.

Cable said that long-term investment in the UK’s economic strengths and being at the forefront of technological development were essential if it was to achieve sustainable and balanced growth.

Creative Industries Minister Ed Vaizey said the Internet had effectively ended any distinction between digital and creative industries. “This Catapult centre will help bring together key parts of the UK economy,” he suggested.

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