Smart buildings using Internet of Things (IoT) technology are likely to feature prominently in the next phases of Smart Dubai’s development strategy, according to Ahmad bin Byat, Smart Dubai’s chairman.
“Having smarter buildings will enable customers to manage their energy bills better, as well as air conditioning and facilities management,” he said yesterday at the sidelines of the inaugural Internet of Things exhibition and conference in Dubai.
“If you are living in a place where these can be delivered in a more efficient way, that translates into benefits for everyone, not least the customer.”
Mr bin Byat’s remarks coincided with an announcement from Dubai Civil Defence (DCD) that it planned to leverage IoT technology to deliver the National Life Safety Dashboard. The project is a real-time, data analytics system that will “allow DCD officials, government stakeholders, building owners and occupants to view the health and operational safety status of every building for Dubai”.
IoT technology, which combines the interconnection of internet-connected devices with real-time analysis of data, is viewed as a key enabler for Dubai’s smart-city vision, according to Ahmad bin Humaidan, director general of Dubai Smart Government.
“Innovation is the primary driver of the knowledge economy and society in general,” he said in his opening address at the conference.
“Collaboration between government entities and the private sector is the key to providing value-added services to citizens.”
Formally launched last year by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the Smart Dubai strategy is intended to transform the city into the smartest metropolis in the world by 2017.
Mr bin Byat, who is also the chairman of telecoms operator du, said the UAE – and Dubai in particular – was uniquely placed to achieve this goal, given the country’s solid infrastructure, the population’s adaptability, and the adoption of technology.
“We are lucky in this country to have a very robust infrastructure, which is fundamental for anyone even thinking of offering anything called ‘smart’,” he said.
“The population in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and elsewhere are very professional and connected people. So the transformation of such a set-up is quite easy. That is why we have this target to become the smartest city [by 2017], I really think that it is doable.”
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