Smart Cities means different things to different people. According to the European Commission, a smart city is an urban area place where digital solutions are used to improve efficiencies in traditional networks and services for the benefit of its citizens and business. “A smart city goes beyond the use of digital technologies for better resource use and less emissions. It means smarter urban transport networks, upgraded water supply and waste disposal facilities and more efficient ways to light and heat buildings. It also means a more interactive and responsive city administration, safer public spaces and meeting the needs of an ageing population.”*

The Horizon2020 research and innovation programme has funded many projects with the smart cities objective in mind. The overall aim of the projects is collaboration to develop a more sustainable world for people to live in and adapted to consumer needs. Smart Cities projects also take into account economic reality and encourages the competitiveness of European SMEs. There are many applications to be seen in Smart Cities such as energyefficiency, renewable energy, mobility and ICT solutions. These applications support cities and places in an energy transition to carbon-neutral systems as well as promoting social inclusion, liveability and prosperity for citizens.

For example, in the EU project SliceNet, the Smart Cities application was street lighting – this was monitored and controlled from a central point, helping with lighting issues, providing feedback on the system and could be switched on and off automatically on campus when needed. Also in the SliceNet project, the eHealth use case, used 5G network slicing to prioritise emergency video calls for ambulance services. This is also an impressive strategy for Smart Cities as ambulance services are facing ever increasing demands on their services and escalating conveyances contribute to traffic congestion, carbon emissions and is not sustainable. Using video, emergency services can respond to emergencies from a control room and offer clinical advice over the phone to patients rather than send an ambulance. This saves on unnecessary conveyancing, reduces carbon emissions, increases operational efficiencies and in fact, patient treatment is thereby expedited. This gives a more sustainable ‘green mile’ in ambulance and medical transport.**

How does BlueEye telemedicine contribute to Smart Cities?

BlueEye is a wearable video solution for telemedicine, public safety and maintenance industries. It has many, many applications, for the modern Smart City. The premise from an environmental perspective is that the ability to show someone live point-of-view video of a complex injury, scenario or any problem means that a remote person can give expert advice remotely. This can save multiple unnecessary journeys for remote experts in telemedicine, in IT, in public safety. This is a huge contribution to sustainability and the ‘green mile’.

BlueEye has other innovative ways to increase operational efficiencies for network operators – being ‘5G ready’, BlueEye software uses an innovative process to carry out dynamic slicing on 5G networks – slicing bandwidth automatically, such that an emergency call can be given greater allocation of bandwidth – for the duration of the call only and in critical decision-making moments for patients. This is very different from the current situation where a VPN is set up to give a certain bandwidth and the business contract between the network supplier and the consumer for the VPN often remain in place for years. Using slicing technology where bandwidth can be allocated dynamically means a huge increase in efficiency for both consumer and the telecommunications operators and creates a whole new business model whereby bandwidth is treated as a commodity for specific applications. This dynamic allocation of bandwidth means operators can tailor the network more precisely to their consumer needs, reducing infrastructure and computer resources, reducing carbon emissions and improving sustainability.

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