News and updates from the continent

Building smart cities on broadband access

Building smart cities on broadband access

Apr 22, 2014

Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, outlined its vision to support the development of Smart Cities in the Middle East at the Arab Future Cities Summit in Qatar in early April 2014.

Reports from the summit said Pan En, Vice President of Middle East Region, Huawei, said the world is becoming increasingly city-centric and that the cities of the future need to become more intelligent through connected infrastructure. As key player in the region’s smart city initiative, Huawei believes more intelligent cities will radically improve people’s quality of life and businesses – and the cornerstone of these smart cities lies with universal access to fast broadband services.

Validating Huawei’s vision for Smart Cities, the World Bank recently released a report outlining that an investment of $25 billion is needed in order to fully develop fixed and wireless internet access in the Arab world. In 2012, the World Bank recommended that governments – especially those in Africa – ensure sufficient availability of quality spectrum for deployment of cost-effective mobile broadband networks; saying that mobile broadband has a higher positive impact than fixed broadband on economic growth, particularly in developing nations.

Huawei says that telecoms operators are also playing a vital role in the planning of smart cities as most projects will have the same technical requirements in the construction of an ICT network; providing a more robust fibre network, pursuit of mobile-broadband capabilities and pursuing these in an environmentally conscious way.

“Whether driven by government, telecom operators or other stakeholders, we believe smart city practices share the same ultimate objective of efficiently servicing the public with information. As a key player in the region’s smart city initiatives, Huawei has an ongoing commitment to provide ICT technologies to Qatar as it looks to become one of the world’s most connected and sustainable smart cities,” Pan said.

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