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Smart Cities are evolving, with ICT revenues expected to reach $977 Billion by 2022

by Andrew Brown | Oct 07, 2015

Cities are resilient, evolving places of trade. Smart use of ICT and IoT can help cities maximize their economies of scale whilst managing the challenges associated with high urban growth. 

Urbanization isn't going away anytime soon. Urban living may encompass 86% of the developed world, and 64% of the developing world by 2050. About a million people are added each week to the world’s cities. Urban development and ICT evolution have a common ground for potential solutions, often dubbed the ‘smart city’.

  • Truly smart cities will meet the needs of current and future generations – maximizing benefits and minimizing the negative aspects of daily living.
  •  A variety of business models will be needed, especially where net public infrastructure investment is low or zero. There is a gap between investment needed for technology demonstrators and the mass market.
  • Standardization and smart citizens will play a greater role in defining future smart cities. Solutions to visualize city data will become more important, as IoT solutions will greatly increase the data available.

Urban ICT revenues are forecast to reach $977 Billion by year 2022. North America and Europe will dominate urban ICT revenue by 2022, with Asia-Pacific the fastest growing market. 

Smart City, ICT, IoT, Strategy Analytics

Standard city metrics are emerging. They are needed to understand:

  • The net overall benefit of ICT projects, compared with other infrastructure investments.
  • The gaps between the public spend needed for infrastructure projects, and the ’grand vision’.
  • The sustainability aspect of new solutions (what will give the best net benefit for this generation and the next).

Cloud-based, ’CityOS’ solutions are good for addressing a range of solutions with a standard, common framework, but the major challenge lies in addressing and integrating legacy infrastructure systems. For this reason it is consulting and system integration that will make up the bulk of ICT revenues, rather than the platform itself. 

Projects addressing ‘scratch-built’ smart cities can demonstrate clear benefits from specific solutions. However, ‘mixed’ development as in 22@Barcelona may give better long-term answers in how to evolve a city, with resilience and with less exclusivity.

The definition of a smart city will evolve over a long time, and ultimately the definition will come from the users (Government and Citizen) rather than a single ICT vendor or service provider.

The Strategy Analytics report “The Future of Smart Cities - Opportunities, Solutions and Players” looks into the ‘smart city’ approaches of a large number of ICT and IoT vendors and service providers. Their solutions and business models are described, together with multiple case studies and recommendations for the future. Different approaches to “smart cities” are covered by this report, including the positive and negative effect of new players, and safety concerns associated with a connected city.

 

 

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