Category Archives: Smart City Initiatives

Mobile Asia Expo 2013

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Even though part of the Connected Liverpool team is still out there in Shanghai, it is time to have a quick look at some of the highlights of the Mobile Asia Expo 2013 conference which took place last week (26-28 June).

The GSMA reported that 20,500 people from 77 countries visited the 3-day conference¬† which was held in Shanghai….MASSIVE! The conference offered executives from the industry’s largest mobile operators, device manufacturers, equipment providers, software companies, internet companies and government delegations.

In total the conference hosted nearly 200 exhibition stands and occupied 25,000 gross square metres of both exhibition and business meeting space. Well you get the point, this must have been an impressive gathering.

The conference showcased various leading companies across the mobile ecosystem such as Accenture, Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell, Amazon China, AT&T, China Mobile, China Telecom, China Unicom, Chunghwa Telecom, Dell, Facebook, Huawei, Lenovo, Mozilla, NEC, Oracle, Samsung, Sharp, SK Telecom, Sony Mobile Communications, Telecom Italia Sparkle, The Coca-Cola Company, Toshiba, Ubuntu, Visa and ZTE, among others. Putting these kind of companies under one roof must be interesting (if not mind blowing) to say the least. Lets explore some of the offerings…..

We have been told that the Connected City ‘stand’ was at the Heart of Mobile Asia Expo.
Across 1,600 square metres, the Connected City showcased a range of mobile connected products and services, providing Mobile Asia Expo attendees the opportunity to experience the “Connected Life” first-hand. Connected City partners included China Mobile, Cisco, Ford Motor Company, Huawei, KT and SAP.

As with the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona earlier this year, also this conference offered a NFC experience. The attendees with a NFC-enabled phone were able to use it at several locations throughout the exhibition. China Mobile was the NFC Experience Official Operator Partner next to its Supporting Partners including Samsung, Huawei, China UnionPay, Sandpay, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and Shanghai COS Software Co., Ltd.

It also offered a Public Policy Forum. Given the importance of a supportive government policy to the mobile ecosystem and the impact the Asia Pacific has on a global scale, the GSMA held a Public Policy Forum at Mobile Asia Expo, bringing together more than 70 key stakeholders from governments, regulators, international organisations, mobile operators and industry manufacturers across the region. The forum mainly examined the regulatory environment that will help to deliver services, create growth and improve lives in the Asia Pacific and beyond.

Additionally, The Connected Liverpool team in Shanghai happily informed their colleagues back in Liverpool about some amazing projects like a robot for educational purposes and a camera that cannot only recognise your face with human recognition technology but also your age and gender….. As you can imagine, us being tech geeks are awaiting our colleagues and their amazing stories with a lot of (im)patience…

For now, good night!

 

Wireless sensor network developers are finding an expanding ecosystem with Internet of Things markets, according to a recent survey by global technology research firm ON World.

In collaboration with several industry alliances, ON World recently completed a survey with leading WSN equipment/device manufacturers, service providers, software developers, systems integrators, component suppliers and end users.

Participants include members of the Bluetooth SIG, CABA, Continua Health Alliance, EnOcean Alliance, IPSO Alliance, ZigBee Alliance and Z-Wave Alliance.

A few of the key findings were:

  • The smart home is currently targeted by nearly two thirds of the respondents.
  • Energy management and lighting are the most commonly targeted current WSN application areas.
  • 43% are planning WSN solutions for health and fitness
  • Likely high growth markets include personal / lifestyle sensors, home and building controls, and smart city applications such as traffic sensing and parking management.
  • Nearly half of the respondents are using ZigBee followed by WiFi, 6LoWPAN and Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth Smart).
  • Data reliability, equipment costs and battery lifetime are the top three most important WSN adoption considerations.
  • Energy harvesting is ranked as one of the top five most important WSN innovation areas and 40% of the respondents have at least tested energy harvesting.

Smart Lightbulb

Imagine a smart eco-friendly LED powered bulb that has a tiny electronic brain and some awareness of what’s going on around it. It is clever enough that if you put it in a bedside lamp it could detect that you have woken up and heading for a midnight toilet visit, it knows the time, so it turns on dimly to not hurt your eyes. It could flash an urgent amber to remind you that your pizza had enough time in the oven and most importantly, it can connect to other objects over Wi-Fi.

These smart lights could automatically fade on and off to save energy as your home’s occupants amble from room to room. They could alert you when you’ve got new emails, triggered by signals coming from your PC or tablet, or help you find a mislaid smartphone by detecting its Wi-Fi signature and then steering you to the room where you have left it. This is really useful, this is smart.

By being smart, the traditional lightbulb is transformed into a helpful and interactive Internet of Things device. Its smart powers may contribute to your relaxation, health or happiness, as lighting effects your mood.

This technology is arriving as we speak because multiple developments have happened all at once. Coloured LED lighting is now powerful, reliable and low priced enough to be built into consumer electronic devices and sold cheaply in bulk. Tiny low-processor chips, like those by ARM, and their ancillary circuits are powerful and ubiquitous thanks to innovations in smartphone design. Moreover, wireless radio systems like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are ubiquitous, tiny, cheap, and economical enough to be built into devices like a lightbulb. This technology creates the ability to transform everyday objects into smart and magical items.

The technology could even go into your home’s irrigation system. Imagine a lawn that knows when it needs a sprinkle by detecting the dryness of the grass or a flowerbed that knows it needs water by detecting the soil dryness. This system will then be smart, and will not waste water. Smart lightbulbs could also be used for security systems by placing sensors in the bulbs that detect intruders, and report in real-time.

To conclude, the smart lightbulb could perform all kinds of functionalities to increase our quality of life and assist us in our daily lives. We are keen to follow the next exciting developments for this ‘smart bulb’.

 

 

 

ESSA Academy Bolton

The ESSA Academy in Bolton created a whole new learning experience for its students and teachers. In addition to a brand new building, the academy states to be a leader in the development of learning technologies.

In order to stimulate creativity and student performance, the academy equipped its students and staff members with iPads, iPods, iMacs, Macbook Pro’s, Macbook Air’s, AppleTV and iPhones. Student’s personal iPad allow them to make notes during lectures, email teachers instantly, search for definitions on the Web, open e-books, and share their notes or drawings with the main screen in the classroom.

By adopting this technology, the academy created an exciting, entertaining, and high performing environment for its students and teachers. Parents can call the teachers on their iPads allowing the teachers to decide whether to take the call or to call back later.

Outside of the classroom, students can film and share each others physical performance during training sessions and can get on a stage and interact with visual objects as e.g. a DNA molecule.

According to ESSA, its agreement with Apple allows the use of 21st Century learning resources and streamlined productivity in a educational setting.