The recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona revealed that while few brand new and innovative smart city deployments are center stage, it’s an area of technology that is intensely interesting to many and worthy of much consideration.

Here are some of my thoughts based on what was showcased:

Idea #1: Traditional industries should continue to form alliances with start-ups to create innovative solutions to local problems

In 2017, Deutsche Telekom will roll out NB-IoT commercially in eight countries: Germany, the Netherlands, Greece, Poland, Hungary, Austria, Slovakia, and Croatia. They used their NB-IoT prototyping hub, to showcase their work with selected partners and start-ups to develop cutting-edge solutions for Smart Cities. Some of the notable examples showcased included a collaboration with Ayyeka, a California start-up that makes smart water management a reality. It develops end-to-end remote monitoring solutions that streamline and secure the process of bringing field data to decision makers and SCADA systems, enabling smart infrastructure and environmental networks.

Also showcased was a beehive monitoring solution by BeeAndMe which provides technical assistance to beekeepers: A microprocessor unit measures all significant beekeeping parameters. The data collected by the “baby monitor” for bees is also processed via data mining techniques, helping find answers to important scientific questions. Such partnerships and alliances mean that start-ups can bring creative innovation to smart city deployments, a cohort that could easily be otherwise outnumbered in decision making by the big players.


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