Smart cities are one of the promised benefits of the IoT, but there is still much work to do. Here are some examples of initiatives around the world.
Connected technologies and sensors are all around us, from smart traffic lights to our own smartphones, collecting data.
We use our personal devices because of the entertainment, productivity and fitness benefits they afford us. They make our lives easier in both domestic in professional environments.
But they will play a crucial role in the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart cities too.
Read More: Where are the UK’s smart cities?
The smart city concept is relatively new, but it’s expected to gain a lot of momentum and interest in the foreseeable future. Why? Because our cities are experiencing dramatic challenges, from overpopulation to pollution. Technology, many believe, can help turn things around and introduce sustainability.
At this stage, smart cities are still in the experimental phase. Organisations and governments around the world are in the process of putting the tech to the test and exploring how it can help citizens. As you can imagine, this tech costs money and time, so it’s understandable that some people need to be convinced of the positives.
But there are some great projects out there, and here are a few of examples of how smart city technology can work as a force for good.
There are already a handful of notable tech companies investing in the potential of the smart city, and Panasonic is one of them. It has a number of interesting projects going on, including one in Fujisawa, Japan. It’s created an ecosystem of smart, sustainable connected solutions that are making the city cleaner. According to the company, the tech has reduced CO2 emissions by 70 percent in comparison to 1990 levels. As well as this, water consumption is being reduced by 30% percent compared to 2006 data.
A big part of smart city technologies is that they help citizens, and in the German capital Berlin, 69 apartments will be built and equipped with ambient assisted living systems, which will allow people live independently regardless of their age. For instance, if a resident has an upcoming doctor’s appointment or needs to take a daily dose of medicine, their intelligent mirror will remind them and display personalised data.
The US is another pioneer in the field of smart cities. In Denver, a new transit-oriented development project is underway to make transport more sustainable. It’ll see commuter hub Pena Station connected with Denver International Airport, including a parking garage that hosts a 1.3-megawatt solar array.. TOD is aimed at creating a vibrant, smart, sustainable living and working community in Denver – encouraging economic growth for businesses and personal enrichment for residents.
Germany isn’t the only European country exploring smart city solutions. France is also in on the act. In Lyon, technologists are looking at ways the latest connected solutions can help residents conserve energy. This project is experimental, although it’ll cover more than 25,000 houses over the next few years. The teams are developing technology that let consumers measure and save energy. So far, the systems have saved up to 20 percent of energy compared to standard heating systems.