Telstra has opened its new "multi-million" dollar technology precinct in Sydney complete with broadcast studio, theatre, telco-themed restaurant and a singing robot named Ged.
Built for customers, it spans 3600sqm on the entire second level of Telstra's George Street Sydney office.
The impressive new space, packed tight with new technology, will be used to wow customers and partners with "curated" solutions as they take a "bespoke" journey through the Customer Insights Centre.
It seems no expense was spared with Telstra's "Insight Ring", the first introvert 360 degree video ring made of nanolumen, through to the 4K-ready broadcast studio designed by Chief Entertainment and Sony.
It also features a 300 seat theatre, 78 LED displays, a new datacentre and a core network that provides 11.5Tbps in switching capacity.
The singing Robot named Ged is one of the many pop up installations which help customers "glimpse two minutes into the future" in the CIC. Ged talks, looks you in the eye and guesses your age.
The new precinct is another push to make the telco a powerhouse in the region and globally across different technologies and follows the Pacnet aquistion, the Blue Jeans Network partnership and investment in Docusign.
Telstra director of segment marketing, Andy Bateman, said the centre was designed to bring together leading-edge technologies, innovations and insights to shift customers’ expectations of what’s possible in their business – and how Telstra can help.
“We care about developing deep, consultative relationships with our customers to deliver value that goes well beyond sales of products and services," he said.
"The types of solutions that will drive growth and productivity for our customers are abundant, but rely on bringing together the right mix of partners, designers and system architects.
"The CIC is about bringing all those elements together and co-creating the right solution to give our customers a competitive advantage.
Telstra executives refused to be drawn on the cost of the venture, but admitted it was a "multi-million" investment of its space, which was due for a refresh.
Bateman said the CIC was a workshop, designed by specialists in design thinking, collaboration and solution design.
At the heart of the space is the aforementioned "Insight Ring", a nine metre, 360 degree interactive circle-shaped platform that surrounds visitors with digital insights mined from Telstra’s knowledge of markets, customers and industries.
In another area, a 14-screen converged media lab offers sophisticated analytics from the global social media landscape.
The datacentre houses 35 racks and serves 55 virtual machines. It has 27TB of conventional storage and 8TB of high performance flash storage installed.
There is an immersive 1080p@60fps video conferencing infrastructure to provide for 10 collaboration rooms.
The network can handle 100 simultaneous video calls via Telstra IP Telephony, while more than 48 fibre ports provide high speed content distribution.
The theatre has the first Meyer sound constellation system which enable the acoustical properties to electronically altered to suit the nature of the event. It also has a 8.5 by 6.2m 4k screen.
The broadcast studio and theatre will be rented out when it is not being by customers and partners.
Alongside this, will be "The Exchange" - an in-house restaurant to entertain customers. It was designed to reflect Telstra's history and contains devices from the Telstra museum.
Head chef Lauren Murdoch has previously worked at Atlas Bistro, Rockpool, and the Concourse Restaurant. She also opened Felix Bar and Bistro.
Bateman said every part of the centre had been designed to convert insights into business outcomes and as a unique global insights hub.
"We’re sure it will help us create with our customers a brilliant connected future,” Bateman adds.
According to a company statement, the CIC is just one example of where Telstra is investing in superior intelligent networks, solutions and services on a global scale to share information from customers, experts and partners as unique business insights.
It follows the launch of the Telstra Discovery store in 2014.