Today, almost everyone connects their network-enabled devices to the Internet. Millions of these devices are connecting to cyberspace each second. The Internet is now available to each and every human being. Also, with the increase in Internet usage, the idea of smart cities emerged.
Smart cities consist of computer systems that can connect to IoT-enabled devices and sensors. This, in turn, can help us tracking valuable information, which enables us to manage our cities more efficiently and in a smarter way.
Smart City IoT Applications
To understand its role in building smart cities, you must know what are IoT devices and applications.
With these applications, you can communicate with a network-enabled device through your smartphone. You can link a vast amount of smart appliances with the help of the Internet as well.
Let’s consider certain examples to understand IoT applications.
You can connect your smartphone to the car through a professional tool or application. Thereafter, you can check the engine and light status with this application. This is just a small example of utilizing the devices through empowered IoT applications.
Also, you can connect your smart washing machine through your smartphone if you own the right app. Moreover, you can check the electricity consumption, water usage, etc.
Now, imagine if IoT enabled devices can do these things, it can certainly improve the lifestyle of society. That’s why smart cities are getting planned where IoT devices and sensors can utilize valuable information about the city and the residents.
What is a Smart City?
A smart city is defined as a city or municipal area with an enhanced lifestyle of inhabitants due to the inclusion of smart technology. The technology will work for the operational efficiency of the city.
Moreover, this will help to reduce the amount of city wastage through the advent of Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
Besides, smart or IoT technologies can be applied to solid waste management, power supply, public transportation schemes, etc.
Definition of IoT
IoT is nothing but a network or system of computer devices, smart appliances interrelated to others. Additionally, devices connected through IoT are capable of sharing and collecting each other’s information.
Hence, you can make any device IoT-enabled if you can connect that particular device to the Internet. If you can operate a TV with your smartphone through any mobile application, the TV is also an IoT-enabled device.
Why are we talking about IoT for smart cities? Well, the smart cities need sensors to operate all the above-mentioned tasks. So, the IoT devices will help to collect valuable information and data for city infrastructures, transportation systems, and waste management, etc.
Meanwhile, human beings or the inhabitants of that smart city can regulate the whole system accordingly.
Modules of a Smart City
There are numerous components that make a city smart. To facilitate all the systems of a smart city, certain aspects are quite important. So, let’s discuss a few smart city modules in detail.
Smart and High-tech Infrastructure
A smart city must acquire smart technologies. The technologies are not only meant for the betterment of humans but, also for improving the environment. That’s why the infrastructure of the smart city should be energy-efficient and environment-friendly.
For example, a street light should light up only in the evening and only when it senses anyone walking under. Here IoT devices are really helpful in sensing the environment. This will reduce the consumption of energy.
Air Quality Management
Nowadays, air pollution is one of the major concerns in our society. To live better, everyone needs fresh air. So, smart cities will help you to breathe better.
The Air Management Tool will collect the statistics on the quality of the air. This cloud-based tool will alarm on how much the emission should be for maintaining the air quality. Basically, it does the forecast on the emission amount and offers scope to regulate it.
A smart city without manageable traffic never sounds perfect. However, real-time traffic flows are uploaded to some platforms. So, the platform has to analyze the provided data.
It should set some technical parameters to adjust the traffic lights to deal with the traffic condition efficiently. As a result, you don’t have to wait longer inside your car when you are traveling in a smart city.
Smart Car Parking
You are going to love smart cities for this amazing facility. Sensors will be designed to sense if any parking lot is vacant or not. No matter if it’s available or not, this information gets uploaded to a designated platform.
Hence, you can know the status of any parking lot near your location and park your car at your convenience.
This module is directly related to the environmental issues in our society. This project not only reduces the amount of waste but, also improves the efficiency of wastage monitoring and collection services.
Let’s understand with help of an example. Technicians have to place sensors in the containers for carrying the waste.
When the container gets full up to a certain level, the authority will receive a notification on its smartphone. They will remove the waste container from there or replace it with a new one. So, the workers can come to collect waste when it is needed.
How IoT Inspires the Growth of Smart Cities?
We have already mentioned how IoT devices work together. For implementing a smart city, the devices have to communicate with each other. Also, more and more devices should connect to the Internet so that everyone can enjoy the benefits of smart cities.
A smart city is a symbol of healthy and efficient living with traffic management and extra safety, reduced pollutions, efficient energy consumption, and much more. The dream is building a smart city is getting real through the inclusion of some of the below-mentioned systems.
- Smart roads adjusting according to the traffic conditions
- Intelligent buildings
- Smart street lights
- Efficient waste collection and monitoring system
- Energy-efficient grids
The situation will be far better if the technology advances and every inhabitant connect their devices to the Internet. Already, testing is going on with the help of autonomous vehicles. Hopefully, we all can visualize smart cities very soon with the assistance from IoT.