How Telecom Operators Can Help Industries to design innovative IoT Applications for Smart Cities?

Internet-of-Things(IoT), a technology which connects objects to the internet. Cisco has anticipated that by 2020, IoT will be consisting of 50 billion devices connected to the internet. As a result, there will be 6 devices per person. It is expected that IoT will fully transform our economy, society and standards of living.  Businesses and enterprises strive hard to bring products to the markets more frequently, adapt themselves to regulatory requirements, and most importantly business leaders tend to innovate persistently. With a large number of mobile staff, growing customers and changing supply chain demand, IoT can help businesses and entrepreneurs to generate large revenue in business. Figure 1 below is depicting the connection of IoT devices to the cloud server in 5G.

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Figure 1: IoT devices connected to cloud server using a 5G cellular network. [Courtesy of intel].

Only those companies will be able to maintain their position among their competitors that not only embrace IoT but also use it to transform their business. By integrating IoT into business operations, products and customer interactions, business leaders can build new business models and foundation of values. McKinsey estimates that by 2025, businesses will be able to generate revenue of approximately $11 trillion per year through incorporating IoT applications and products.

Businesses are now transforming their processes, operations and business models to benefit from the latest technologies. Smart cities, connected utilities, smart transportation, connected factories, smart health, smart grid and connected miles are few names of the result of this evolution. All industries are considering IoT a breakthrough technology in order to help them optimize their business, enter new markets and build a good customer relationship. Many industry experts, like IDC, estimates that businesses will spend over $20 trillion in the next four years to realize the potential of IoT. An illustration of IoT deployed in smart city verticals.

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Figure 2: An illustration of Internet-of-Things applications Smart Cities.

The revolution of IoT may have begun but it isn’t implemented to the full scale yet. There is still plenty of time before its transformational powers will be fully felt. A number of technical, economical, and regulatory perceptions still need to be addressed. There are some companies out there who need to do something but are not sure about how. According to Harvard Business Review and Verizon statistics, it is concluded that less than 10 percent of companies have deployed IoT initiatives. Furthermore, only a small minority which is 56 percent have the proper strategy for IoT.

According to recent research conducted by Cisco about ICT companies and decision makers concluded that the top three challenges for implementing IoT initiatives in their business were: (i) Data Privacy; (ii) Standardization of IoT protocols and intra-operability among different business systems; and (iii) Design cost.

IoT supplier market is currently very fragmented with a massive amount of big and small companies providing single pieces of IoT implementation devices, applications, and solutions. As a result, making it more challenging for the companies to meet the demands of customer needs.

To further know about Application of IOT and SON for Smart Cities, Technologies, and Challenges, you can join our Smart Cities Essential Courses here.

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