Smart Dubai chooses du to deliver smart infrastructure
Smart Dubai, an initiative to transform Dubai into the world's smartest and happiest city, has appointed Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Co (Du), the UAE's second telecom operator, to build the soft infrastructure for realising the goal.
"We are proud to be appointed by Smart Dubai to help develop the infrastructure to build the smartest city in the world and we have started working on this exciting project," Osman Sultan, CEO of du, made the announcement at the Future Cities Show taking place at the World Trade Centre along with the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM).
Sultan said the UAE's futuristic and visionary leadership has launched the Ministry of Happiness and Ministry of Artificial Intelligence. "We are working on a Smart City model that will incorporate all of these."
One of the main pillars of the Smart Dubai strategy is interconnectedness. Dubai is already a highly connected society as residents use online services and social media quite actively. Smart Dubai seeks to address the majority of residents' everyday needs through digital services rather than traditional ones, thus making their lives easier and happier. This includes healthcare, education, culture,
housing, entertainment, community and volunteering services among others.
"The world is moving too fast and we need to keep up pace with the fast transformation. It took the global airline industry 68 years to reach 50 million users. Now it takes months and days for companies to reach that number of user base, be it Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Uber or Airbnb," Sultan said.
Amid the ongoing technological revolution, being connected is a basic human right, Sultan said. "Does anyone realise how much digital content is generated in every minute? In every 30 seconds, 150 million e-mails are sent out, 2.78 million videos are generated and 2.4 million Google searches are conducted worldwide. The development of the commercial Internet has occurred concurrently with a massive expansion of the global economy, which has experienced 6.6-fold growth in nominal terms - from $11.1 trillion to $73.5 trillion since 1980."
The du chief said Internet protocol (IP) traffic continues to advance rapidly, with 2019 traffic projected to be 64 times its 2005 volume. Global Internet bandwidth more than quadrupled between 2010 (50 terabytes per second) and 2014 (200 terabytes per second). More importantly, total cross-border Internet traffic increased 18-fold from 2005 to 2012.
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development estimates that about 50 per cent of all traded services are enabled by innovation stemming from the technology sector, which includes the facilitation of cross-border data flows. According to a newly released report by McKinsey and Company, data flows account for $2.8 trillion of global GDP in 2014 and cross-border data flows now generate more economic value than traditional flows of traded goods.
"Information and data about each of the 7-plus billion people are been stored in a virtual world - the cloud - for usage. That changes everything, opens up new possibilities and exposes a person to threats," Sultan told delegates at the Future Cities Show.
"From the Internet of Nothing regime, we are moving towards an era of the Internet of Everything. From little information or limited data, we are moving into a world of unlimited, big data.
"From unshared certainties, we are moving towards shared uncertainties. From physical robbery, we are exposing bank accounts to cyber robbery where billions of dollars are stolen by pressing the 'Enter' button - without any clash or casualty.
"Life in the digital era is going to be completely different and in many ways, challenging than that of the analogue era. In a smart city, consumers are getting used to the new way of life where convenience dictates how they live, work, communicate in a digital lifestyle. Interesting times ahead," he said.
The second edition of Future Cities Show has set the tone for smart cities through 3 pillars - innovation, sustainability and happiness. With a theme of achieving sustainability through innovation, the show showcases the cities of the future by highlighting the latest and the most innovative technologies that will change the future.
Italy was among scores of countries participating at the AIM. The Italian Trade Agency made a presentation, which was presided over by Liborio Stellino, Ambassador of Italy to the UAE. Keynote speakers included Stefano Nigro - FDI department director, ITA; Fabio Gallia - CEO and GM of CassaDepositi e Prestiti; Zeno D'Agostino - president, Port of Trieste; and Sergio Buonanno - CEO of Invitalia Ventures.
"We are extremely pleased by the positive response we received at AIM 2018 and the opportunity to meet first-hand potential investors and demonstrate why Italy is a competitive investment location and one of the most business-appealing countries in the European region. The Middle East is an important region for us and this was a great platform for us to showcase the best of Italy and the tremendous opportunities that it presents to the investment community" said Nigro.
- [email protected]