Smart City Technology - Everything Becomes Even More Interesting!

The existence of smart cities is based on disruptive innovation, digital technology, and urban environments. The internet has made it possible for the information to be digitalized and this process has been ongoing for a while now. As it stands, we are soon entering into an era of industrial digitization especially with the recent advances and developments with artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain.

In a city context, citizens and governments are able to access and work with data to ensure improvements in every part of their daily life. Current trends with urbanization also show that it is necessary that effective city management strategies are put in place for the megacities being created. Ordinarily, urbanization would lead to resource scarcity, increased crime rate, lack of space and pollution. So that they’re able to better accommodate and manage this growth, digitalization will become prominent in those cities and city data will be configured so that the population is well served and criminality is managed effectively. When these solutions are totally implemented in a city, we have a smart city.

Examples of solution that a smart city would have are:

       Smart containment of pollution: the city will have sensors around it actively reading and reporting the amount of CO2, air pollution, humidity levels, and toxic ground waste. They’re also able to predict and prepare for inevitable natural disasters. So, the city is always clean and healthy with a strong understanding of the effect of pollution.

       Smart recycle plan and waste management: waste containers are there to ensure that waste materials are collected efficiently and are recycled to save money, reduce waste and pollution levels.

       Smart energy system: the use of energy systems and regular monitoring ensures that energy is saved throughout the city. Household appliances are made to help save energy and minimize cost.

       Smart transportation: in a smart city, traffic is well managed and congestion is reduced by monitoring road usage, avoiding delays and quick reactions to accidents. The presence of smart cars able to drive and park themselves is used by a number of people and this leads to shorter travel time and less congestion on the road.

       Smart safety: drone oversight, smart street light, license plate scanning, and facial recognition, are some of the instruments that the city police use to prevent violence, solve and combat crimes and secure the lives and properties of the citizens.

       Smart supply chains: automation is a constant in a smart city and the supply chains are also automatized. Transporters are now able to communicate and pass information across to each other. So, a vehicle delay or changes to product conditions are sent automatically to an administrative dashboard.  

Therefore, a smart city is a city that has a significant amount of its infrastructure interacting constantly with and attached to other digital technologies. This city will have to maximize the efficiency of a business, increase connectivity, prevent disasters and also contribute greatly to its citizens’ quality of life.

For a smart city, the number of smart initiatives that are going to be implemented to improve all aspects of the citizen’s life is unlimited. These initiatives cut across daily life including food, medicine, accommodation, and shelter, etc. everything is transformed by digitization.

As we delve into this new decade, there are already some smart city trends that we ought to look out for.

5G Internet Connectivity

5G cellphone technology is already something that is widely anticipated worldwide. This is proven to be very important for the deployment of IoT due to the improved density of its connectivity, lower latency and lower requirement of power. These characteristics make it an important solution for devices using IoT. However, this connectivity isn’t ready yet.

Many countries are already in the 5G deployment spectrum auction phase and mobile carriers will bid for the airwaves use right, and build 5G infrastructure before they are able to provide this service. So, it is a few years away. But it’ll be very important in building smart cities.

In the absence of this connectivity, other options are being used. For example, Jaromir Beranek, Prague smart city committee chairman, says the city used Sigfox and LoRaWAN for applications that demand less data while spectrum auctions for 5G are underway. Matthew Schultz, an expert writer confirms that New Zealand and Australia have looked out for networking standards that are non-cellular as they wait for 5G to emerge.

This emphasizes the role of 5G cellular networks as the best solution for IoT. According to Schultz, non-cellular connections still work for IoT currently. But once more devices are connected, it won’t work. 

Tracking of Human Asset

Devices are already being connected and used to track vehicles. But with 5G connectivity coming in, more possibilities are opening up and IoT devices can be deployed better. It will even be possible to track people. This is particularly important in cities where the workers have to work in risky and life-threatening situations, as this is an area you’ll like to explore technology.

An example of an institution already looking out for its customers with their mobile app is the SafeTrx. This system is already present in 13 countries. The life of co-CEO of 8 West Consulting, John Murphy, was saved once when he was stranded once in very low temperatures on Mont Blanc du Tacul by a phone call. And this inspired the creation of a signal for cellular distress. Currently, SafeTrx is the current mobile protection platform in Spain, the UK, Ireland, and some other countries.

Benefits of Smart City Technology

If we’re to sum up the benefits of smart city technology, it’ll be simple to improve the quality of the citizens’ life. But on a broader level, there are different ways in which smart city technology does this that we need to understand.

Public safety and crime-fighting: smart city technologies can be deployed to tackle criminal elements and solve crime cases earlier, but more importantly, they can be employed to prevent these crimes from happening and to ensure that the lives and properties of individuals are secure.

Time-saving commutation: it will be impossible to improve the quality of life without improving the means of daily commutation. Overcrowding and traffic are common problems people face every day. According to professional writing service, the application of smart transportation will cut down on the time people spend in transit by 15-20%. Some people would even enjoy bigger reductions in time spent on the road and this will greatly improve the quality of people’s life.

Improved health: the impact of technology in healthcare in recent years cannot be overemphasized. But in smart cities, there’s a wider room for technology to play a bigger role in improving the healthcare of the citizens to treat and prevent chronic health conditions.

Environmental cleanliness and sustainability:  ordinarily, the environment tend to suffer from industrialization and urbanization. But with smart cities, the case is reverse. This is because smart applications will ensure that pollution is dealt with, waste is effectively and efficiently disposed of and recycled and people can live better lives. More attention is also paid to basic life elements such as air and water. And this ensures an improved livelihood.   

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