In order to understand the world of smart cities, you need to understand the Internet of Things (IoT).

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What is the Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things refers to how everyday objects can be smart devices for sending and receiving data. These objects become smart devices when they are embedded with software connectivity enabling data exchange – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/technology-36912701/technology-explained-what-is-the-internet-of-things. As the Internet of Things increases in size, scope and global influence, the concept of smart cities is being brought from the distant future to the immediate present.

What are smart cities?

Smart cities value data exchange as the universal language driving how individuals and businesses engage and connect with each other. This interchange of data creates a better quality of infrastructure and services for urban areas.

Smart cities are intended to help meet global population demands, as outlined in research published by McKinsey. Our global population is expected to expand at an astonishing annual rate of 65 million by 2025.

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Smart and valuable

Such is the belief in the power and potential of smart cities, they are expected to be valued at just over £300 million by 2020. And by 2025, experts anticipate six hundred cities worldwide will contribute an impressive 60% of the GDP.

Application development is being hailed as the next Industrial Revolution. The development process is benefiting from approximately £4.5 trillion investment to bring smart cities closer to the goal of all users being linked to the one main framework. By 2020 experts expect 34 billion devices will be connected to the internet.

Smart signage

Digital signage is the vehicle used to ensure useful information is accessible to all, particularly with infrastructure, real time transport information as well as emergency information. This signage is also used to promote local businesses, displaying their information for tourists as well as locals. There is a lot of potential for local businesses specialising in digital signage such as (http://moodmedia.co.uk/digital-signage-solutions/) to assist businesses wishing to take advantage of the marketing potential.

Connected cities

Smart cities ensure their visitors remain connected throughout their stay, through continuous Wi-Fi. This is to ensure all visitors have access to local information, despite turning off their device data service when they arrive in a foreign location. Smart city Wi-Fi assists its visitors in exploring local areas, furnishing them with the correct local information.