Juniper Research estimates that smart cities have the potential to give back 125 hours to every resident every year.
“Analysts tend to focus on the technical underpinnings of building a data-centric world,” says Windsor Holden, head of forecasting and consultancy at Juniper Research. “We can’t overlook the importance of the real human benefits that smart cities have. Connected communities, municipal services and processes have a powerful impact on a citizen’s quality of life.”
The study found that Chicago, London, New York, San Francisco and Singapore, are the world’s leading cities integrating IoT technologies and connected services.
These cities stand out because of their efforts to connect city municipalities, businesses and their citizens to address a growing need to improve “livability” – specifically around mobility (San Francisco and Singapore), public safety (Chicago, New York and Singapore), health care (London and Singapore), and productivity (Chicago, London and Singapore) – as they transition to a smarter, more connected environment.
“Partnerships between city planners, government officials, private companies, OEMs, software developers and startups are creating smart city ecosystems that will empower citizens while reducing our carbon footprint,” Sameer Sharma, global general manager of smart cities IoT solutions at Intel, said.
Many of the IoT technologies identified in the study – including mobility, health and public safety solutions – are already being deployed around the world.
The average peak-time vehicle speed in cities is a dismal 4 mph. This gridlock causes drivers to lose up to 70 hours per year. The study determined an integrated IoT-enabled infrastructure of intelligent traffic systems, safer roads, directed parking, frictionless toll and parking payments can give back up to 60 hours a year to drivers otherwise stuck in their cars.
The Intel-sponsored study found that smart cities with connected digital health services can play a significant role in creating efficiencies – saving citizens almost 10 hours a year – and even potential lifesaving benefits for both patients and caregivers.
Improvements in public safety can deliver substantial time benefits for smart city citizens – nearly 35 hours per year, according to the study.