Huawei has introduced its new smart city concept, which uses leading ICT technologies, on the Huawei Smart City Summit 2017 in Budapest.
The Huawei CEE-Nordic region has presented its Smart City concept on the Huawei Smart City Summit 2017, held as part of the China-CEE conference. According to the company, due to the increasing urbanization, by 2025, there will be 27 megacities with 10 million residents, placing extraordinary pressure on public transportation, healthcare services and public services – meaning cities will have to rethink their operation. Cities will have to become smart to keep up with the expectations and needs of their citizens for high quality services and efficient systems.
In order to create a smart city, the digital transformation of the city is of utmost importance. This needs data-driven systems, which help authorities with the management of the city, and allow the integration of the digital and physical worlds. „All successful smart city programs must be steered by the leadership of the city, sharing data and information is crucial” – said David Tang. According to the director of the Huawei CEE-Nordic region, we must change the way we share data, in order to allow the interconnection of the departments of the city and allow them to share data. A dedicated smart team is also needed, along with long-term and stabile investments, and city leaders must work together with a leading digital provider that can manage the transformation. This partner has to be open-minded, willing to share its values with other technical partners, and has to create a full ecosystem for the smart city. Huawei is willing to be and capable of being this kind of leading digital partner – said David Tang.
Also, Huawei says that the leadership of the city has to build ubiquitous connections spanning its people and things, and at the same time, link its employees, customers, partners and suppliers together. The city’s operations must be based on big data and artificial intelligence, and needs to automate its business processes with real-time decision making, to realize simple, effective and intelligent operations.
According to Peng Xi, president of the CEE-Nordic Enterprise Business Group of Huawei: „a Smart City is like a living organism powered by a nervous system. This nervous system comprises a “brain” [the control centre] and “peripheral nerves” [the network and sensors], gathering real-time information about the status of the city, transmitting the data, enabling the “brain” to analyse and make informed decisions, delivering feedback commands, and ultimately carrying out intelligent actions. This creates a seamless connection between the digital and physical worlds. Huawei is dedicated to building a strong nervous system for Smart Cities with the help of such leading ICT technologies as cloud computing, the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence. Our goal is to be the foundation that supports the robust and sustainable development of Smart Cities”.
The brain of the Smart City
Huawei has also introduced the Intelligent Operation Center (IOC) on the event, the solution that functions as the brain of the smart city, connecting the digital and physical worlds. The infrastructure of the IOC comprises distributed cloud data centers and ubiquitous city networks that collect, integrate and share city information, enabling real-time visibility of the city. By using big data, machine learning and AI technologies, the IOC delivers valuable insights to facilitate city planning and management of vital services such as transportation and security
Artificial intelligence and smart cities
According to Huawei, artificial intelligence plays a crucial role in Smart City development. Huawei doesn’t think of artificial intelligence as a new business or industrial branch that has just been invented. The company invests in intelligent sensing, cognition and computing. Huawei now develops AI systems that allow for synergy between hardware and software, as well as devices and the cloud.
Huawei Smart City solutions are already using artificial intelligence, with the intelligent city operations center, smart transportation, or face- and number plate recognition. The AI-based video analysis technology is expanding the application scope of security technologies and implements new functions, for example, real-time vehicle trajectory tracking, which were available only in movies. Furthermore, AI will bring huge changes to areas like public safety, healthcare and city transportation. Smartphone users are already connected to smart city services, for example in Estonia, where they are connected to the police and the fire department.
Wang Yanmin, director of Huawei’s Consumer Business Group in the CEE region said, „smart devices and artificial intelligence help the users in becoming smart citizens and use the advantages of smart cities. We are at the beginning of a new era, where artificial intelligence is no longer restricted to supercomputers, but is also a part of smartphones. The first mobile artificial intelligence processor in the world has debuted with the Huawei Mate 10 Pro, as its camera recognises things and themes. Thanks to Huawei’s developments, AI is now a part of smartphones, and available to everyone”, emphasises Wang.
IDC estimates that by the 2021 60% of the world’s population will own a smartphone, and 8.1 billion smartphones will be shipped in the next four years — making mobile the pervasive platform for AI. According to the latest forecast of the company, worldwide spending on cognitive and AI systems is forecast to reach $57.6 billion in 2021, and a continuously expanding number of applications will use it.
The smart city market expands quickly
Huawei is operating 13 OpenLabs and 36 innovation centers worldwide, to contribute to the development of Smart City infrastructure. The Smart City solutions of the company are being used in almost 40 countries worldwide, in more than 120 cities, in 9 just in China. The company’s revenue form the Smart City market can reach USD 4-billion in 2017, and the business branch can grow dynamically in the next two years, by 40-50% at a yearly rate, according to the forecast of Huawei.