What is a smart city and why are people talking about it?
Firstly, let’s start with some statistics. By 2050, 66% of the world’s population are expected to live in urban areas. At present, cities consume 75% of the world’s resources and energy, emitting 80% of greenhouse gases. 1.3 million people are currently moving to cities each week and there are more mobile phones (7.5 million) than people living on the planet (7.4million). (www.un.org, 2018)
Cities are home to more than half of the world’s population and are sites for tremendous innovation, so it comes as no surprise that they face increasing environmental pressures and infrastructure requests from residents, for them to deliver on a better quality of life and enhance their daily interactions.
When you think of smart cities you probably envision electric cars and solar panels. This is true however; smart cities are rapidly evolving and involve more than clean energy. In a simple explanation, they encompass the combination of electric power, telecommunications, infrastructure and data and information exchange to become the backbone of their innovations and fuel economic growth. In other words, within a smart city, both the digital and communication technologies translate into better public services and better use of resources while having less impact on the environment. Citizens can engage with smart city eco-systems using smartphones and mobile devices, as well as connecting their cars and homes. As the cities get smarter, they become more liveable, connected and responsive.
Our focus is how telecommunications in particular are expanding their investments into cities to improve their operations. The demand for communication platforms allows cities to utilise the Internet of Things applications, enhance quality and performance of services, reduce costs and engage more actively with its citizens. By effectively leveraging telecommunication technologies, cities can connect various ‘things’ (sensors, devices, analytical tools) to each other either directly or via the internet allowing them to become smarter.
Smart cities are more than a trend, they’re the wave of the future in this so-called generation of the ‘now’.
Commhoist is a mobile telecoms network logistics contractor providing an end-to-end managed service for new builds, upgrades, decommissioning and maintenance works.
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