Smart cities - a multi-billion-dollar industry

Within the next four years, a bunch of cities around the world will be transformed into smart cities, technology research firm IHS Technology suggests.

By becoming smart, they will offer operators $25 billion (£17.96bn) in opportunities.

According to IHS Technology, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and New York, London, Amsterdam, Seoul, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Singapore are most likely to become 'smart' before 2020.

Currently, there are 423 smart city projects, including safety and security, energy and resource efficiency, mobility and transport, physical infrastructure, governance and healthcare.

The biggest effort is in the mobility and transport industry, which currently has 110 projects, IHS Technology says.

Physical infrastructure industry sits on number two with 107 projects, while there are 104 energy and resource efficiency projects. The least amount of projects are in the healthcare industry, a total of 13.

Companies looking for places to kickstart their smart city initiatives should go either to the United States or the Asia Pacific region, the company suggests.

The United States is the country with the highest number of smart city projects (91), while the Asia-Pacific region is a key market for smart city development. This is due to accelerated urbanism and economic growth in the region.

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