“Smart City: The Biggest Secrets About Which One Must Know!”

Smart city and its key technologies

Smart cities are not just an idea or a dream of the longer term. Further, because of the wildly innovative Internet of Things (IoT) solutions, digital twins or greater interoperability, the concept is expanding rapidly.

|Video Source: CNBC YouTube|

Municipal governments are also leveraging cellular and Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) wireless technologies. This is done subsequently to attach and improve the infrastructure, efficiency, convenience, and quality of life for residents and visitors alike. So, let us dive you in.

What is a smart city?

|Image Courtesy: Forbes|

A smart city is certainly a framework, composed of information and Communication Technologies (ICT). This concept develops, deploys, and promotes sustainable development practices to deal with several growing urbanization challenges.

Also, an enormous part of this ICT framework is actually an intelligent network of connected objects and machines that use wireless technology and cloud for data transmission.

These cloud-based IoT applications receive, analyze, and manage data in real-time simultaneously to assist municipalities, enterprises, and citizens for creating better decisions that improve their quality of life.

Citizens thus engage with smart city ecosystems in various ways using smartphones and mobile devices and connected cars and houses. Pairing devices and data with a city’s physical infrastructure and services can subsequently cut costs and improve sustainability.

Moreover, IoT can aid communities to improve energy distribution, streamline garbage collection, decrease traffic jam, and even improve air quality.

Smart cities
|Image Courtesy: Behance|

For instance,

  • Firstly, connected traffic lights receive data from sensors and cars adjusting light cadence and timing to reply to real-time traffic, thus reducing road congestion.
  • Secondly, connected cars can communicate with parking meters and electric vehicle (EV)charging docks and direct drivers to the closest available spot.
  • Thirdly, smart garbage cans automatically send data to waste management companies and schedule pick-up as required versus on a pre-planned schedule.
  • Then next, citizens’ smartphone becomes their mobile driver’s license and ID card with digital credentials. This speeds and simplifies access to the town and native government services.

Why do we need smart cities?

Urbanization is certainly a non-ending phenomenon. And, as a result smart city is the ultimate way to overcome effectively. |Image Courtesy: Inc. Magazine|

As of now, 54% of individuals worldwide sleep in cities, a proportion that’s expected to succeed in 66% by 2050.

As technology grows, the concept of artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT) are often used into planning Smart cities. This will consequently tackle several issues during a coexistent society.

Smart cities are, therefore, designed for optimum usage of space and resources alongside an efficient and optimum distribution of advantages. It also aims at increasing connectivity at various levels among citizens, or in other words, between the administration and population. Public properties for instance schools, roads, and hospitals are improved. The system can thus tackle several redundancies of this and save time and money.

Key technology trends in a smart city

1. Digital twin

Digital twin in smart city concept
|Image Courtesy: PTC|

A digital twin is certainly a digital representation of a physical asset that promises one source of reality. this will even be combined to create an in-depth view of entire systems, from traffic to the impact of construction and roadworks. This year will subsequently see more companies announce a greater return on investment (ROI) on digital twin projects.

2. AI and ML

AI and ML role in smart city
|Image Courtesy: Hackr|

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) adoption will bring both risks and opportunities for smart cities, so, few are ready for the societal impact of either technology.

The Oliver Wyman Forum’s September 2019 study also analyzed 105 cities worldwide with the use of four criteria. Firstly, the standard of their planning and preparation for the impact of AI; secondly, the power to execute; thirdly, the standard of talent and education; then, the city’s overall momentum.

3. Greater interoperability of the smart city

Interoperability in smart city
|Source: MS PowerUser|

Smart cities with ambitions to enhance services as an example traffic management, air quality and town planning will believe interoperable IoT. City networks have also evolved bit by bit instead of being designed. So, the challenge for cities is to integrate older data into cloud services, introduce mobility, waste management, energy, pollution, social services, and e-health solutions. It further manages a ‘babel’ of knowledge storage protocols and grows departmental collaboration, all with constant downward pressure on budgets.

4. Surveillance tech

Surveillance technology for smart cities
|Source: Smart Cities World|

A September 2019 report by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace certainly found that a minimum of 75 countries around the world is now using AI tools, including computer vision, to watch citizens’ activities. Huawei’s technology is most used, by 50 countries, with IBM’s employed by 11 nations. there’s also a robust possibility of a backlash against smart city technology if citizens believe a surveillance culture is being implemented, using threats of crime or terrorism as an excuse.

To sum up

Indeed, we certainly can’t claim to list all the critical concepts and issues associated with smart cities and therefore the IoT and people which will emerge within the years to come.

Can you fill in some of the gaps?

So, if you’ve something to mention on smart cities, share best practices, an issue to ask, or have simply found this text useful, please leave a comment within the box below. We’d also welcome any suggestions on how it might be improved or proposals for future papers. (Header Image: Connected World)

Henceforth, looking forward to hearing from you!

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