The role of operators in smart cities

Mike Zeto, General Manager, Smart Cities, AT&T, was at TM Forum Live! this week talking about the role of  operators in smart cities, and AT&T’s key learnings from its work in this area in the US.

He said, “We were the first carrier to set up a dedicated smart city business [about a year and a half ago]. We’re’ helping cities to provide tangible benefits to citizens using IoT (internet of things) technologies within a holistic strategy and framework.”

He added, “We’ve had experience years with cities and municipalities, being more than just a technology provider to them. Now we’re at the point where they’re leaning on us to help build out their smart city strategy.  And there are some key trends we’re starting to see in the United States that we think we’re going to see globally.”

He highlighted:

  • Smart lighting has the opportunity to be the IoT platform for municipalities – “the iPhone for municipalities if you will”.
  • Emphasis around water – real tangible ways to help cities such as detecting leaks before pipes burst and dealing with water quality issues. “Those are global problems that you’re trying to solve that affect everybody.”
  • “It’s all about the data”: All these things that are connected securely through connectivity, through networks that go to the cloud. It’s about what do you do with that data and how you take insights from it and apply analytics to it, to allow cities to make informed decisions to benefit the cities and the citizens that they serve.

Zeto said, “I get excited about this space because this is an evolution not a revolution and this is the next step in leveraging IoT to create smarter, more efficient cities that are more liveable for the citizens.”

Watch the full video interview here.


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    Sarah is a freelance writer and editor with an interest in new technologies and how they impact our everyday lives.

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