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Making Cities Smart

  • Jennifer Proctor
November/December 2017
This article is a sidebar to "AT&T Demonstrates Sustainability Progress."

Cities are getting smart, partly because of the rise of cloud computing and the internet of things (IOT). City administrators are starting to use IOT data to run their operations and help improve residents’ environments and lives. AT&T is doing more than taking note of this trend; it’s working with city officials in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami and other cities through its Smart Cities solutions.

“We see sustainability as a central element to the future of smart cities,” says Michael Zeto, general manager of AT&T Smart Cities. “We look forward to helping cities around the world achieve the vision of efficient, safe, sustainable and livable cities that empower everyone to succeed.”

In 2016, market research company Frost and Sullivan released its report “Smart Cities Need Telecommunications Providers: Smarter solutions provide opportunities to manage resources, create better quality of life.” The firm identified eight key attributes that make cities smart: smart governance and education, smart energy, smart building, smart mobility, smart infrastructure, smart technology, smart health care, and smart citizens.

According to the report: “Urban migration and the physical expansion of cities and metropolitan areas are adding immense pressure on energy resources, environment, infrastructure, sanitation, health, public funds and other basic utilities. … Therefore, it has become imperative that this issue of urbanization is addressed in a manner that caters to our evolving society, lifestyles and technologies.” Frost and Sullivan says smart is the new green and suggests that, because of its involvement with the IOT, AT&T is a smart city market leader.

The Frost and Sullivan report also highlights how AT&T’s work is forming an ecosystem that helps cities with water management, mobility, street lighting and more. AT&T solutions can bundle utilities and energy, transportation, infrastructure, public safety, and citizen engagement.

AT&T’s effort with smart cities can have a generative effect on the future of cities everywhere. The company’s resources can reach developers who then can continue to create offerings and connect the IOT to smart cities. This will lead to even more innovative solutions that address current challenges and anticipate future needs.

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