Cisco cloud services has announced 8 more cities, in addition to Paris and Copenhagen, that are now cloud-connected. These 8 “smart cities” are Kansas City, Schenectady (USA); Adelaide (Australia), Bucharest (Hungary), Dubrovnik (Croatia), Bangalore, Jaipur (India) and Trencin (Slovakia).
Smart cities collect real-time data and generate useful insights concerning city operations like utility services, traffic, population and infrastructure. The cloud collects data from IoT (Internet of Things) devices such as sensors and cameras deployed in all corners of the cities. Using this data helps them operate more efficiently, reduce costs and respond quicker to emergencies.
Munish Khetrapal, managing director at Cisco, said that real-time data is so important that a 2-minute faster response can save significant amounts of money. Traffic congestion is one such example. There are many figures discussed on the cost of congestion to the economy, not least the wasted time of workers who cannot be productive whilst they are stuck in traffic. By implementing the intelligence of cloud services in cities, congestion can be eased.
Currently, the concept of smart cities is at an early stage due to the usual restrictions e.g finance, IT personnel and inadequate cyber security governance. However, more and more cities are starting to address these challenges and it will be something we see more of in the future. Whilst it certainly has overtones of ‘Big Brother’, future smart cities will play an enormous role in communications and knowledge-gathering for us all.
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