On the road to the smart city

smart city US

It is incredible to think that 70 years ago there were just 751 million people living in urban areas. That figure has now grown to almost 4.3 billion. The United Nations predicts urbanisation will continue to increase exponentially, with 68 percent of us expected to live in an urban landscape by 2050 – that’s another 2.5 billion people to accommodate. When you take into account that only three percent of the world’s landmass is taken up by urban development, you’d be excused for questioning just how exactly we are going…

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Volvo and Baidu partner on autonomous taxi project

Baidu Volvo

Swedish vehicle manufacturer Volvo is teaming up with Chinese technology giant Baidu to build autonomous taxis. Together they are aiming to launch a level 4 driverless ride-hailing service in China by 2020. The news follows the announcement of another two-year Baidu project, with Ford, in which the pair will begin level 4 testing on the streets of Beijing before the end of the year. Industry forecasts predict China will represent the world’s largest market for autonomous vehicles in the coming decades. Around 14.5 million autonomous cars will be sold in…

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Ericsson, Einride, Telia connecting self-driving trucks with 5G

Ericsson Einride Telia self-driving truck

Networking provider Ericsson and Swedish telco Telia, in partnership with autonomous transportation company Einride, are demonstrating how driverless trucks can be enhanced with 5G technology at the DB Schenker facility in Jönköping, Sweden. The global relationship aims to create a more sustainable transport ecosystem by connecting electric, autonomous vehicles. Einride’s T-pod, a driverless, electric vehicle that the company claims can operate with the safety and reliability needed to bring autonomous trucks onto public roads, will host Ericsson’s 5G technology. The T-pod currently only operates at DB Schenker’s logistics facilities in…

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£10m of UK government IoT funding lost in the machine

London Big Ben

In March 2015, the then UK chancellor George Osbourne announced the Internet of Things UK Research and Innovation Programme. The initiative was to be led by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), with help from the Office for Life Sciences, Innovate UK and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Internet of Things UK was allocated a budget of more than £40m, to be spent over the following three financial years. An evaluation report from economic development consultancy SQW has found that unforeseen delays at the…

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Renault unveils autonomous concierge concept for last mile delivery

EZ-PRO concept-car

Renault has unveiled the EZ-PRO, an autonomous delivery concept that could provide a modular, last-mile option for logistics operators. Renault launched the futuristic concept at the Hannover Motor Show this week, highlighting the company’s confidence in this potentially lucrative market. The ‘last mile problem’ is a critical challenge for cities, as the boom in online and mobile commerce has caused an influx of petrol- and diesel-powered vans into crowded centres and suburbs, ramping up pollution. Companies are exploring a range of solutions, from autonomous electric vehicles to electric bikes and…

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World-leading smart factories identified by World Economic Forum

WEF Smart Factory

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has released a list of what it says are nine of the world’s smartest factories when it comes to adopting industrial IoT (IIoT) technologies. These ‘lighthouse’ facilities, as they are called by the WEF, have been selected from an initial list of some 1,000 manufacturing companies, based on their successful implementation of Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) thinking, in ways that have had proven financial and operational benefits. The aim of the WEF initiative is to build a network of such ‘lighthouses’ worldwide, in order to…

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How smart cities can help build a sustainable world

smart city world

By Haider Iqbal, director of IoT, Public Services & Transport, at Gemalto. An occasional series of vendor perspectives on the world of connected business – because it’s all about making new connections and starting new conversations. Sustainability is a powerful force for positive change in our world; one that is driving transformation, innovation, and improvement across all aspects of society. No longer limited to conserving natural resources, sustainability now encompasses a broad range of challenges, including urban growth, transportation, our carbon footprints, and even people’s work-life balance. As the world’s…

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Uber closing self-driving truck division

Otto Uber

Uber is pulling down the shutters on its self-driving trucks unit, a programme rooted in the $680 million acquisition of San Francisco-based Otto in 2016. The company has announced that it is now refocusing its efforts on self-driving cars as it gears up for IPO in 2019. Last week, Uber’s head of advanced technologies, Eric Meyhofer, confirmed that the company’s fleet of self-driving cars is being redeployed to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to resume public testing. Uber’s autonomous vehicles were pulled from public roads in March, following a fatal collision with a…

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Semtech’s LoRa technology creates smarter streets in India

Ahoy Systems smart street light solutions offer ultra-low power capabilities to save cities on utility costs. Semtech Corporation, announced that Ahoy Systems, an electronic design house and OEM for several smart city devices, incorporated Semtech’s LoRa® devices and technology into its smart street-lighting products. Neel Maharaj, CEO at Ahoy Systems, said: “Our smart street lights are built to ensure city efficiency and sustainability, without compromising the safety of streets for pedestrians and drivers. Smart cities leverage our smart lights to reduce their energy footprint and cut down on maintenance costs.”…

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LG CNS announces CityHub platform for smart city management

internet of things

LG subsidiary CNS has announced its CityHub platform designed to provide centralised management and data analysis of citywide IoT devices. CityHub, the platform’s tentative name, is able to collect data from IoT sensors across the deployed smart city. This could be sensors installed on things such as vehicles and buildings, or infrastructure like street lights and traffic cameras. The platform supports the international oneM2M standard in addition to 98 other IoT standards used by specific industries like manufacturing and logistics. “With widespread connectivity, Cityhub can single-handedly collect and manage IoT-based…

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Bluetooth Mesh is a wise choice for smart buildings

bluetooth iot

IoT Tech Expo in Amsterdam is just kicking off and there’s already fighting words from low-power networks on why their technology is the best. In a keynote titled ‘Putting the Smart in Smart Buildings with Bluetooth Mesh’, we heard from Bluetooth SIG Technical Program Manager Martin Woolley on what makes the technology a wise choice for smart building deployments. “Last year, we introduced something called Bluetooth Mesh,” says Woolley. “That gave us the ability to have many-to-many communication paths between devices.” “Many thousands of devices can form a network ……

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U.S. Cities plan to fund smart city initiatives

Las Vegas IoT

To succeed, smart city initiatives need adequate financial support. Here is how two cities in Nevada, one in Oregon and another in Missouri are approaching smart city deployment and funding. The smart cities sector is a prominent poster child for IoT. But there are arguably few truly smart cities. A recent McKinsey report notes even the most “cutting-edge and ambitious smart cities on the planet still have a long way to go.” The management consulting firm also notes the most advanced smart city projects tend to be in cities with…

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Toronto pilots new smart city technologies with Intel, Microsoft

Toronto city

The City of Toronto in Canada has chosen a number of technologies to pilot in its smart city initiative. In partnership with Microsoft, Intel, QuadReal Property Group, the IESO, Fasken Law, and the Build in Canada Innovation Program, the city will trial a range of Internet of Things (IoT) proposals in its Urban Pilot Program, also known as UPPlift: Toronto. The solutions will use a mix of the IoT, advanced sensors, and artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance facility efficiency, and improve citizens’ experience of the built environment. Smart environments Among…

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Altizon, Novecom complete Smart Cities technology test

Newcastle-Street-Circuit

Smart Cities are poised to take off according to a recent IDC FutureScape noting that 30% of major cities in 2018 will put a plan into place a smart cities platform strategy in order to utilize the Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, intelligent software, sensors, and wireless technology. The end result will be widespread use of systems that interoperate to provide new levels of data and automation throughout municipalities and city agencies, from education, healthcare, transportation and buildings. As a real-world application of this trend, Altizon, a global industrial IIoT…

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Cisco invests in Smart-City solutions for integration of autonomous vehicles

Adelaide

Cisco has announced that it is investing $1M in world-first Smart City technology for Adelaide to help reduce traffic congestion and create the foundations for the deployment of autonomous vehicles on busy roads. The pilot in partnership with the Government of South Australia and the City of Adelaide measures the dwell time and queue length of vehicles as they wait at an intersection; a key element for congestion monitoring. It also calculates rolling averages across the day via a customised dashboard and a suite of metrics that show how well…

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