SK Telecom has partnered with a Japanese pet insurer to implement a revolutionary AI-based veterinary X-ray diagnostic service.
The telecoms giant closed a deal with Tokyo-based insurance firm Anicom Holdings to distribute its own artificial intelligence (AI)-based diagnostic system, X Caliber, to veterinary hospitals in the country.
The company, which is believed to hold 46% of the pet insurance market share in the Asian nation, is partnered with some 6,000 clinics.
Min Yong Ha, Chief Development Officer at SK Telecom, says the company strives to “popularize” its AI diagnostic and pet medical services beyond the domestic market.
SK Telecom launched X Caliber a year ago in partnership with 5 South Korean universities. The diagnostic tool uses AI to analyze a dog’s X-ray images within 30 seconds and detect diseases with accuracy levels of over 84%.
700 clinics in Seoul
SK Telecom partnered with the Seoul Veterinary Medical Association (SVMA) to expand the use of X Caliber to 700 veterinary clinics in the city.
As part of the memorandum of understanding (MoU), the 2 organizations will also promote academic exchanges to improve pet welfare, especially through their findings on the benefits of AI-based pet care, local media reports.
The telecom giant is believed to have supplied its AI-based X-ray diagnostic service to nearly 300 veterinary hospitals in South Korea since its launch.
SKT has been working on boosting the service’s disease detection accuracy through collaborations with veterinary colleges and hospitals. Earlier in August, it was reported to have expanded to include abdominal conditions on top of musculoskeletal, thoracic, and cardiac hypertrophy in dogs.
The South Korean government recently announced a plan to expand the country’s pet industry to ₩15 trillion ($11.4B/€10.3B) over the next 3 years. Korean officials valued the local pet industry at ₩8 trillion ($6B/€5.5B) in 2022.
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