Mining company BHP Billiton has announced the opening of a $5m app development hub in Shanghai, China. The studio will employ 50 people, and is designed to create apps to help streamline the mining business, ranging from communication to productivity suites.
BHP Billiton opens an app development hub in Shanghai. Nickel West mine in Australia pictured below
Diane Jurgens, BHP Billiton’s CTO, said:
“The team working in Shanghai will develop a range of mobile applications that could include the capability for operators to re-plan crew work in the field, check equipment maintenance requirements and location, immediately report potential safety problems or even check where and when people are travelling.”
Shanghai was chosen due to its, “Vibrant tech culture, and recognition as a global centre for mobile application development,” according to the company. Its marketing teams are already located there. The app incubator is the first of three planned hubs for app development from BHP Billiton.
Apps will be tested at the site, before being used company-wide. The mining industry continues to equip mines with 4G LTE and Wi-Fi connectivity, and is pushing forward with automated transportation systems that will rely on apps in the future.