$5 Trillion Smart City Question Posed in New ABI Research: Cheaper, or Smarter?

Smart Cities research pegs global cost savings with smart city tech at $5 trillion yearly; Survey of 455 companies highlights tension between cost savings and better decision-making as the main drivers

Company Release - 12/5/2017 4:00 AM ET

WILMINGTON, Del., Dec. 05, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Smart city technologies could save enterprises, governments and citizens globally over US$5 trillion annually by 2022 according to a new whitepaper by ABI Research. The new white paper analyzes the scope for cost savings and efficiency as a driver for smart city deployments, smart technologies and the IoT.

According to the report, titled ‘Smart Cities and Cost Savings,’ the use and deployment of IoT and smart technologies will be pivotal to the future success of smart cities, but only if players collaborate to embrace a holistic approach. With higher concentrations of people and enterprises in cities as a result of urbanization, smart city and IoT technology, along with new sharing and service economy paradigms, will be key for cities to optimize the use of existing assets, maximize efficiencies, obtain economies of scale and ultimately create a more sustainable environment. Automation, artificial intelligence, along with sensors, data-sharing and analytics, will all be critical in helping cities save costs.

The report, commissioned by InterDigital (NASDAQ:IDCC), on behalf of its Smart Cities-focused business, Chordant™, in partnership with CA Technologies (NASDAQ:CA), considers the aggregated absolute cost-saving potential for the government, enterprises and citizens in a typical smart mega city of the future (i.e., in the next 5 years) with 10 million inhabitants. This is based on the yearly savings achievable for 75 of the world’s cities that have a total urban population of more than 5 million (source: World Atlas). Key cost savings from the ABI Research report highlight that, in each such typical smart mega city of the future:

  • Governments: Could save as much as $4.95 billion annually. Street lighting and smart buildings are two areas that could yield savings, with smart street lights expected to cut repair and maintenance costs by 30 percent.
  • Enterprises: A $14 billion cost-saving opportunity exists for enterprises, in areas that include freight transportation by using more energy efficient transport options, such as drones, robots or driverless vans and trucks, and smart manufacturing plants.
  • Citizens: Savings of up to $26.69 billion per year could be achieved in areas such as utilities, through the deployment of smart meters and micro-grids, and in education with the development of a hybrid education system (physical and online).

“While smart cities technologies offer multiple benefits, very significant direct cost savings represent a key incentive to embrace urban innovation for city governments, citizens and enterprises alike; this allows building stronger business cases with faster ROI, facilitating project approval and accelerating deployments,” said Dominique Bonte, VP President, Markets, ABI Research.

The report references a B2B technology survey of 455 US-based companies across nine vertical markets conducted in March 2017 in which the companies ranked a list of 11 key benefits expected from implementing innovative technologies. “Reduction in operational costs” barely surpassed “faster and more efficient decision making” as the number one expected benefit, with a five percent margin.

“Smart cities are built upon the Internet of Things (IoT) allowing citizens to reimagine how they work, live and play,” said Rahim Bhatia, General Manager, API Management, CA Technologies. “We’re excited to see quantifiable outcomes being delivered across today’s local governments, with application programming interfaces (APIs) playing a fundamental role in seamlessly connecting the critical infrastructure that makes smart cities a reality. If managed effectively, APIs deliver a number of benefits including the secure exposure and reuse of open data, acceleration of app development velocity, and the expansion of city partner ecosystems, to help maximize ROI and improve decision making across all corners of the new smart city.”

Additional findings from the report also include:

  • The scope for efficiency improvements across all urban sectors and segments amounts to more than US$5 trillion in yearly cost savings globally by 2022; and
  • Enterprises within a mega city (a city of with a population in excess of 10 million) could save as much as US$14 billion, or 25 percent of total enterprise costs, with smart city technologies.

“We understand the important role of smart cities for our future, and this report further reinforces how much these will contribute in both economic and social terms,” said Jim Nolan, Executive Vice President, Chordant, at InterDigital. “But the true potential of smart cities won’t be realized if governments, enterprises and citizens don’t work together in harmony. Doing so will promote the emergence of smart city marketplaces and open platforms, where third-party players are able to ensure seamless integration of new smart city technologies into legacy platforms and systems.”

The new report points to several use cases of smart city technology. One example is the oneTRANSPORT project in the United Kingdom which used the Chordant platform to address challenges in transportation systems with IoT technology. The oneTRANSPORT project enabled transport information to be shared by a number of stakeholders including transport authorities, municipal authorities, and new third parties, to optimize transport networks across towns and cities.

The full ABI Research report, ‘Smart Cities and Cost Savings,’ is available to download here.  

About InterDigital®

InterDigital develops mobile technologies that are at the core of devices, networks, and services worldwide. We solve many of the industry's most critical and complex technical challenges, inventing solutions for more efficient broadband networks and a richer multimedia experience years ahead of market deployment. InterDigital has licenses and strategic relationships with many of the world's leading wireless companies. Founded in 1972, InterDigital is listed on NASDAQ and is included in the S&P MidCap 400® index.

InterDigital is a registered trademark of InterDigital, Inc. Chordant is a trademark of InterDigital.

For more information, visit: www.interdigital.com.

About Chordant™

Chordant, an InterDigital business, is part of a global company passionate about innovation and a standards-based approach that stimulates thriving global ecosystems. Solutions powered by the Chordant platform address the fundamental challenges in Smart City deployments. Like a perfect chord of musical notes, the Chordant platform brings harmony to diverse devices, data and services. We have created one of the largest Smart City deployments, integrating hundreds of transport data sources into a transport data marketplace. Our Smart City solutions have also been recognized by leading analyst firms and organizations. For more information, visit: www.chordant.io.

About CA Technologies®

CA Technologies (NASDAQ:CA) creates software that fuels transformation for companies and enables them to seize the opportunities of the application economy. Software is at the heart of every business in every industry. From planning, to development, to management and security, CA is working with companies worldwide to change the way we live, transact, and communicate – across mobile, private and public cloud, distributed and mainframe environments. Learn more at www.ca.com.

InterDigital Contact:
Patrick Van de Wille
Email: patrick.vandewille@interdigital.com
+1 (858) 210-4814

CA Technologies Contact:
Kelley Schultz
Email: Kelley.schultz@ca.com
+1 (646) 826-6035

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Source: InterDigital, Inc.