Posted on April 15, 2015

In an increasingly city-centric world, public and private sector leaders from across the Middle East are investigating what impact the Internet of Things (IoT) could have as a strategic platform for building more intelligent cities over the next three to five years. The consensus was underscored at this week’s Arab Future Cities Summit 2015 taking place in Doha, Qatar.

Internet of Things to enable [].JPGExperts from Huawei—a leading global ICT solutions provider and Diamond sponsor of this year’s summit—led discussions on how smart cities within the Middle East will be largely driven by their ability to connect more industries, devices and systems; known as the Internet of Things. Leveraging existing investments and new innovations within mobile broadband infrastructure, Huawei believes that the Internet of Things will be instrumental in enabling local governments to improve the quality of life of citizens and empower businesses to achieve operational excellence.

“Considered a mega wave of technology adoption following the Internet and mobile broadband, the Internet of Things represents the pinnacle of our industry’s technology ambitions,” says summit speaker Safder Nazir, Regional Vice President of Smart Cities & IoT, Huawei Middle East. “Improving the quality of life of citizens and businesses in the Middle East can certainly be benchmarked and improvement targets can be set. However, the ability to measure, monitor and make progress on these goals will only be enabled by more city systems being connected. That requires expanding network capacity and coverage, leveraging existing investments, and alternative business and operating models.”

During this week’s summit, Huawei reviewed plans to power the Middle East’s transition to 4.5G and 5G mobile broadband services working with local telecom operators prior to 2020. Experts on the ground also discussed strategies on how to prioritize cellular IoT (cIoT) platforms for the Middle East by making low power wide area (LPWA) connectivity an enabler for smart cities. Huawei’s ‘Center of Excellence’ for Smart Cities & IoT is assisting regional governing bodies and telecom operators to drive new initiatives from concept to reality. The Center acts as a hub for industry professionals in the region and the sharing of global best practices.

Approximately 45% of Huawei’s 170,000 plus employees globally are engaged in R&D, enabling it to innovate is all areas of business and ranking the company in Thompson Reuters 2014 Top 100 Innovative Companies.