Cisco and Denmark Telco Incumbent TDC Sign Key Partnership Agreement
On June 9, an Internet of Things (IoT) Regional Forum took place in Copenhagen. The backdrop to the event was the smart city lighthouse engagement in Copenhagen and the twin deployments that forum participants were able to witness and experience for themselves during the week of the event. Facilitated through Cisco’s partnership with Danish telco incumbent TDC and the municipal leaders in greater Copenhagen, the deployments – one in the heart of Copenhagen, covering a stretch of the Danish capital, and the other at DOLL in western Copenhagen, one of the world´s largest smart urban services outdoor labs – involve over 40 solutions for lighting, parking, waste and environmental sensing converged on 7 miles (over 10km) of road.
Integrated Digital Platform Live in Copenhagen
Key to the greater Copenhagen deployment has been the implementation of Cisco’s integrated digital platform for cities. This cloud-based offering helps to converge various data streams from sensors and end-points around the city, forging an ecosystem of city management applications in an open application program interface (API) environment. While this digital platform has been going live in cities around the world, it will be a cornerstone in the rich, cross-city use case, multiple vendor environment forged in greater Copenhagen. DOLL leadership can now monitor and manage each light pole, parking spot and waste bin, receiving granular real-time readings on a single interface. With the platform live, the service can be extended to any other community in Denmark – and that is exactly what Cisco and TDC plan to do.
The Future of Partnerships for Smart City Engagements
Cisco and Danish telco incumbent signed their partnership agreement for continued collaboration, committing themselves to jointly provide cities with digitization solutions, while also collaborating on new technology innovations and enhancing the joint partner ecosystem already in play. This partnership is fundamentally important. Not only does it pave the way for large and mature deployments throughout Denmark, in Europe and beyond, it also serves as a great example for the evolution of smart city deployments. As service providers (SP) around the world rethink their roles in the industry, the potential for SPs to bring digitization and technology solutions to a multitude of community environments such as ports, airports or large retail areas, is simply enormous.
Are Smart Cities Entering a Phase of Maturity?
Cisco and many of its partners have been active in the smart city space for a good number of years now, driving key engagements in just under 100 communities around the world to date. Yet the Copenhagen engagement appears to signal a significant inflection point in the arena of smart city digitization, it’s all becoming real in the mainstream scene.
A few new and exciting things worth mentioning:
- First, while technologies underpinning city digitization strategies have matured greatly over the past few years, discussion has shifted from technology to business outcomes. This rationale for deployments, whether that is economic, social and/or environmental, is panning out in countless communities around the world. Scalable, mature solutions – ranging from smart mobility and dynamic outdoor light, to solutions with indirect city and public service benefits such as air quality and community safety have been and continue to be validated – to the point that common adoption is now a reality.
- Second, new partnerships – and old partnerships redefined – such as the one signed by Cisco and TDC allows for a vast scalability and mature servicing of solutions and the connectivity they require at a level unthinkable just two years ago.
- Third, an integrated management platform for cities is a fundamental to city digitization. With the IoT and data boom, a digital platform allows for proper management of sensors and devices, as well as the data they produce, helping cities to avoid vertical vendor lock ins and maintaining data sovereignty. The extended architectures at the heart of city digitization have become effective, open, seamless, scalable and replicable, while delivering on measurable, desired outcomes.
With that, smart cities are finally becoming real, not just a thing of the future. It’s true, there´s never been a better time to build a smarter community.