It’s Not a Mirage, It’s a Smart City: Welcome to Tomorrow’s Connected World

Dubai’s IoT Ignition Lab is ready to deploy your smart city technologies.

Cities have been using data for decades but with the growth of cloud computing and the evolution of the Internet of Things, the smart city is no longer a concept – it’s a reality. By 2050, 70 per cent of the world’s population will be living in smart cities. Dubai’s glitzy skyscrapers – towering over man-made islands – are synonymous with the limitless possibilities enabled by today’s technologies. It is within this fittingly high-tech playground that an Intel Ignition lab plays host to IoT demos making tomorrow’s smart city innovations, deployable today.

Smart cities are digitally nimble, reactive hubs that collect data on their environment and effectively process it in order to take real-time action. Most of us have already become accustomed to our transport apps allowing us to plan our city commute more effectively – we’ve already said goodbye to long, chilly stints at the bus stop. But smart cities are capable of so much more, from cleaning up our cities to streamlining transport systems, and connecting locals with businesses to turbo-charging everyday utilities. As the possibilities continue to evolve, so our urban ecosystem becomes increasingly data driven.

“Dubai’s glitzy skyscrapers are synonymous with the limitless possibilities enabled by today’s technologies”

Let’s take a walk through the smart city of tomorrow, enhanced with Intel’s Dubai IoT Ignition Lab’s Market Ready Solutions.

The Connected Commute

For anyone living in a busy metropolis, it is hard to imagine how we ever got around before travel apps mapped our journeys and real-time information was beamed out from our bus stops. IoT technologies are not only transforming our journeys, they are streamlining the way transport businesses operate. Huawei’s* smart bus solution makes it easy for operations management to trace the movement of their buses in real-time, while enhancing the security of passengers and cutting costs through additional efficiency. Powered by Huawei AR515 gateway and Intel x-86 processors, the smart unit is fitted on local buses and controls a camera feed which beams compressed video footage back to the server at the operations room. For any transport businesses looking beyond their smart city, this solution can easily be scaled across Europe.

A Cosmopolitan Clean Up

Yesterday’s urban centers were congested and dirty – struggling to keep up with the scale of migration to a city with streets apparently ‘paved with gold’. Tomorrow’s smart cities will be fighting air pollution with monitoring systems that check on air quality and patterns, enabling local authorities to proactively improve urban environments. The Bosch Micro-Climate Monitoring system*, which is powered by the energy efficient and secure Intel® Quark™ processor, does just this by capturing micro-climate data over wi-fi, 3G and LTE networks using compact, wireless sensors. It measures all the key air pollutants including particulate matter, carbon monoxide, nitric oxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide and ozone as a standard – but also collects data on other environmental factors like temperature, relative humidity, light, sound and pressure. In an urban setting, this means, for example, that schools can plan ahead if pollution forecast is high, with indoor classroom activities. It also helps employees maintain safe work environments on construction sites, for example.

The Devil Is in the Detail

While many smart city innovations can be intangible to the general public, due to their integrated and ubiquitous nature, a variety of everyday items are being reinvented or revamped – and they’re hard to miss. A trip to the public toilets will never be quite the same, thanks to the Savortex* smart ad dryer. Unlike the traditional hand dryer, it has a multi-dimensional purpose, entertaining users with targeted advertising – providing another lucrative touch-point for local businesses – while boosting operational efficiencies by monitoring the levels of use and alerting the cleaners. Powered by the Intel Atom® processor, the dryer has a digital screen and connects via wi-fi, Ethernet or 3G. Boasting scalable capabilities that can be deployed easily across Europe, the Savortex smart ad dryer could revolutionise our bathroom habits.

Behind the Scenes: Supporting Technologies

Just as the turning cogs in the first industrial mills are synonymous with the industrial revolution, so the smart city is supported by core technologies that may be overlooked by the public, but are crucial to the smooth running of their smart cities. With large wi-fi zones being an essential element of the digitised city, opportunities to monetise this public utility are abundant. The UCOPIA* inline solution, powered by Intel® Xeon® E3 family processors, is one example of this: sitting between a wi-fi access network and the organisation’s core LAN, all data streams through the UCOPIA controller to guarantee security and improve efficiencies of hotspot devices. At the other end, the UCOPIA Web Service platform provides easy to read analytics, providing insight into the WI-FI users as well as downloadable databases for targeted marketing campaigns.

This is only a whistle-stop tour of the IoT technologies that can be found at Dubai’s Intel IoT Ignition Lab, but already tomorrow’s smart city is shaping up. What makes these technologies different is the fact that they are market ready – easily deployable and scalable. Just like an Arabian mirage, if you look hard enough you too will see your smart city evolve.

*Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others

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