4G and 5G wireless data technologies are spurring the online migration of smart-city applications, allowing them to capitalise on the latest innovations in artificial intelligence (AI), according to a new report from Omdia.
Thanks to new levels of connectivity and the growing capabilities of AI, the data and insights collected through Internet of Things (IoT) networks can be more easily monitored, analysed and acted upon.
“From video surveillance, to traffic control, to street lighting, smart-city use cases of all types are defined by the collection, management and usage of data,” said Keith Kirkpatrick, principal analyst for AI at the research firm. “However, until recently, connecting disparate components and systems together to work in concert has been challenging due to the lack of connectivity solutions that are fast, cost effective, low latency and ubiquitous in coverage. These challenges now are being overcome by leveraging advances in AI and connectivity.”
How does AI enhance smart-city applications?
AI allows data to be analysed more deeply, identifying patterns or anomalies which can then enable machines to mimic what humans might consider to be intelligence.
For cities, this has the potential to reduce crime, improve air quality, cut traffic congestion and enhance the efficiency of government services.
As an example, cities are increasingly employing cloud-based AI systems that can search footage from closed-circuit TV (CCTV) systems, allowing the platform and technology to be applied to existing camera infrastructure. Video surveillance can be combined with AI-based object detection to learn patterns in an area; detect faces, gender, heights and moods; read licence plates; and identify anomalies or potential threats, such as unattended packages.
Omdia predicts that the global smart-city AI software market will grow to $4.9bn (£4.2bn) in 2025, up from $673.8m (£576.9m) in 2019.