hello@sledge.co.uk +44 (0) 208 740 4550

The 4th Platform

by Admin | Aug 24, 2017 | Uncategorized |


2017 has seen an exciting explosion of mainstream AI technology touching both the consumer and business environment alike. Technological advances across suppliers (IT, Media, Telecoms) are driving a fast development in the revolution of our day to day processes.

With the adoption of Amazon’s Alexa and Google home, the connected home has taken another massive leap, giving consumers a powerful platform from which to control their utilities and indeed their daily life. This level of accessibility is rapidly becoming more accessible through price point and ability, becoming the next level; ‘Google Search’ leaps and bounds away from where Siri first entered the market. The same movement can also be seen in the development of cognitive intelligence to aid business offerings and performance.

Earlier this year leading Telco, Telefonica, launched their ‘4th Platform’ plans at Mobile World Congress. Named ‘Aura’, the platform will enable users to manage their digital experiences with the company and control the data generated by using Telefonica’s services. Developed to create a new relationship with the customer, Aura gives control back to the user. It empowers them to manage their data as well as giving a new level for Telefonica services, superseding any online or website Q&A. The key difference with the assistant will be its ability to restrict data sharing with third parties depending on the command as well as being compatible with Amazon’s Echo speaker.

So how does this technology fit into the world as we know it?

This cognitive intelligence is driving us into the 4th platform. The 3rd platform was coined from the explosion of cloud computing and big data which was highlighted as transformation which was taking over the way people and business use technology. The 4th platform is ultimately the process of data knowledge and optimizing the use of this data to augment the use of time and even thought.

In brief:

  • The First Platform: Physical assets – Fiber, satellites and mobile (‘main frame’)


  • The Second Platform: IT & Systems – servers and services needed to run and interconnect the network (Client/Server)


  • The Third Platform: Products and Services – Security, IOT and cloud solutions  (Social, Mobile, Cloud and Analytics)


  • The Fourth Platform – A digital brain using the power of the network and accessing the personal knowledge in the hand of the user (AI and IOT)


Digital transformation continues to be a hot topic across industries with new advances being launched year on year based in improving not only business acumen but also user need and experience. Realising that technology and the need for adoption changes the typical infrastructure of business, but like Telefonica, turning this into an advantageous offering and a strong business venture is yet another challenge in this digitally disruptive age.


Written by: Sian Smith (Account Director)