24 Apr 2015

Smart connectivity for smart cities

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Smart city talk has shifted from hot buzz to experimentation and planning. The city will be transformed from a traditional, silo-based model to a more collaborative, integrated service delivery model. A model that will see municipality equipment, buildings, vehicles and citizens exchange data for the benefit of all users. The global smart city market is estimated to reach $1.5 trillion by 2020. A market that will essentially be occupied by energy, infrastructure, IT, telecoms players and city governments.


The aim of the city of tomorrow?

Optimise the quality of day-to-day urban life, stimulate sustainable development, generate savings on energy, boost productivity, drive the development of innovative business and activities. The city will become tomorrow’s growth hub. Some 26 smart cities are expected to be connected by 2025 across the world. They’re all in the making now!


The potential benefits?

Cities today are increasingly recognising the potential of the IoTi to increase urban efficiency. From cutting costs in rubbish bin collections to empowering street lights. They could monitor everything from electric meters and vehicle charging-stations to traffic lights and parking spaces, but also changes in noise levels that might indicate incidences of crime or civil unrest.


And where do carriers fit in?

Wholesale is one of the tech building blocks available to city authorities to deliver solutions to better manage key elements of the urban infrastructure. With around 25 billionii connected devices forecast by 2020, building low energy consumption networks is vital to support smart cities. Billions of low-power devices, such as smart meters, will need to remain connected in order to transmit small amounts of data. Other devices, such as security cameras will need much higher data speeds with strong coverage and priority data traffic. Orange mobile networks are already supporting this growth and catering for different loads and different speeds. And we have already started working on low cost, low energy solutions that will bring new options for tomorrow’s more environmentally friendly urban landscape. The smart city challenges are immense, but so are the opportunities. Developing a strategic vision of the smart city to be forthcoming with smart propositions will be vital. We carriers are re-imagining the role of technology and connectivity, anticipating multiple needs and multiple speeds in the smart city ecosystem.


Carriers’ ambition?

Ensure that our smart networks pulsate to make the heart of the smart city beat powerfully.


Carriers’ must dos?

Invest in business intelligence and innovation; work together with other smart city ecosystem players to develop a network norm that facilitates solutions such as LPWAiii on mobile networks; anticipate the arrival of new entrants seeking a share of pie; review the IP promise upwards! Carriers must invest in ultra-broadband network, expansion, optimisation and cost efficiency improvement, and also adapt technologies, offers, pricing strategies to answer the rising need of smart cities.


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