The study ranks the top 20 smart cities worldwide across four key areas: mobility (smart traffic systems), health care (telehealth and preventative care), public safety (through machine learning-enabled software), and productivity (via apps and digital services). In addition, it looks at how these cities deliver positive outcomes for increased time savings and productivity; increases in health and overall quality of life; and a safer environment.
"Analysts tend to focus on the technical underpinnings of building a data-centric world," says Windsor Holden, head of forecasting and consultancy at Juniper Research. "We can't overlook the importance of the real human benefits that smart cities have. Connected communities, municipal services, and processes have a powerful impact on a citizen's quality of life."
According to the study, the world's leading cities integrating IoT technologies and connected services are Chicago, London, New York, San Francisco and Singapore. They stand out, the report says, because of their cohesive efforts to connect city municipalities, businesses, and their citizens to address a growing need to improve "livability" – around mobility (San Francisco and Singapore), public safety (Chicago, New York, and Singapore), health care (London and Singapore), and productivity (Chicago, London, and Singapore) – as they transition to a smarter, more connected environment.
"Cities are engines of economic activity, and we as an industry need to make them more resilient and responsive," says Sameer Sharma, global general manager of smart cities IoT solutions at Intel. "Partnerships between city planners, government officials, private companies, OEMs, software developers and startups are creating smart city ecosystems that will empower citizens while reducing our carbon footprint."
One of the study's key findings is that smart cities have the potential to "give back" about three weeks worth of time to each smart city inhabitant every year. This time saving, says the study, reflects a combined saving across the four key areas examined: mobility (60 hours), public safety (35 hours), health care (9 hours), and