ASAP+ Cannes Lions:Where Creativity & Technology Meet

The annual Cannes Lions Festival, which kicked off on June 18th of this year, brings together the best work, creativity and talent from around the world and is a must-attend event for anyone serious about advertising. Naturally, the ASAP+ team is here!With more in-depth participation from tech and data companies and an increased number of digital awards in recent years, the Cannes Creative Festival is no longer just a stage for advertisers. While creativity remains the main criterion for winning the Lion's prize, technology is a central topic of conversation, both in showrooms and forums and during down time on the beach.This year’s festival included a huge host of Chinese players, including tech giants Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu, and Huawei, who made themselves known during the event.The Alibaba Group, for instance, paraded its core value of, “To the Greatness of Small” throughout Cannes. Tributes to their subsidiaries, including Taobao, Tmall, Aliyun and Alimama, were also on full display throughout the exhibition area.The new copywriting AI from Alimama also made its debut at the festival. 
This new tech represents China’s innovation in this field, but it’s yet to be seen what effect it will have on the industry.
Tencent opened up the round table-style forum of the China Day Unit, an exhibit focused on Chinese creativity and design. The group, who recently launched their new marketing system Tencent WE+, also introduced their off-site activity of “Tencent Cannes Talk,” which aims to share the latest case studies of China’s digital innovation to promote marketing reform.>Tencent: China is Knocking: Onward and Upward, Where Does China’s Innovation Take Us Next?We also discovered that Tencent was working with Carrefour to turn a local Carrefour store in Cannes into a "smart retail pop-up". After experiencing the convenience of WeChat pay, how could our friends overseas not envy us?In addition to the “bigwigs” of Chinese tech, Cannes also featured big appearances from all of its old friends, including Facebook, Twitter, Spotify and YouTube. These major players contracted out most of the beach-front at Cannes this year; so much so that you could barely walk on the beach without being in one of their designated areas.One of the most popular forum topics over these last few days was the influence of technology on creativity. Particular attention was paid to Artificial Intelligence, with speakers from companies such as Cheil, Samsung, Deloitte Digital and Dentsu sharing their latest results and views on the topic.Cheil X Samsung: Is Technology the Downfall or Saviour of Creativity?Deloitte Digital: What is Creativity?Dentsu: Androids, AI, and the Future of Human CreativityThey looked to answer the question of whether technological advances are eroding the value of creative ideas or enabling them to take on a new form, as well as what the result will be of AI’s rapid development. Cannes may not be able to give a definite answer to these questions, but they’re topics that ASAP+ has been exploring in depth.What exactly have we been up to, you ask? You’ll just have to wait and see…