Sensors are central to smart cities, creating a network that connects up the local infrastructure to allow monitoring of traffic and public services such as lighting and parking spaces.But if these technologies are to reach their full potential, it’s important that they are interoperable.
The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) announced last week that it has established a study group to look into the challenges of setting common standards for the use of Internet of Things (IoT) devices in smart cities.
The expert group will be responsible for international standards to enable the coordinated development of IoT technologies, including machine-to-machine communications and ubiquitous sensor networks. It will also draw up standards that leverage IoT technologies to address development challenges in the urban environment.
Building smart sustainable cities will require efficient collaboration between the public and private sectors, said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. This new ITU-T Study Group will bring together a diverse selection of stakeholders, placing ITU’s technical expertise at the service of other industry sectors as well as the national and metropolitan administrations responsible for urban development.
The group will aim for the standardisation of end-to-end architectures and interoperability of IoT applications and datasets employed by various industry sectors, the ITU said.
The deployment of IoT technologies is expected to pick up pace over the next few years, connecting an estimated 50 billion devices by 2020.
Earlier this year Gartner estimated that smart cities will use 1.1 billion connected things in 2015, with the number rising to 9.7 billion by 2020.