Barcelona has become one of the most innovative cities
Over the past few years, Barcelona has been one of the most innovative cities in the world and it is committed to being a smart city. That’s one of the reasons why Barcelona has been hosting the Smart City Expo since 2011.
It gathers experts, institutions and companies which want to improve citizens’ lives by using the power of new technologies. Urban areas are growing fast and they need to develop new ways to improve areas such as urban mobility , energy and retail.
Regarding security surveillance, several firms presented some interesting security solutions. For instance, the startup Drone Thunder unveiled their security drones, which are able to watch wide areas of a city as well as read license plates.
Amr Salem, Cisco Global Director Smart Cities , pointed out that the key is to create public- private partnerships and that smart cities must seek to improve people’s lives. That’s why several public organizations also showed their solutions.
One of them was Eurecat, the Technology Centre for Catalonia which was created by the collaboration between public and private institutions. They presented their photovoltaic modules, which can turn the urban (furniture) into power generators.
The 164 apps which were selected
The SCEWC also hosted the Smart City App Hack Grand Final, an 8 month challenge in which startups from all over the world participated. First, 164 apps were selected from which they chose 15. The startups were from Barcelona, Lyon, Phoenix, Dubai, Helsinki, New York and San Francisco.
They were required to present an app to improve people’s lives in terms of urban mobility, energy and emissions, shopping and retail, culture and tourism, and collaborative city plans.
The apps participated in 5 categories
The fifth edition of the Smart City Expo brought together 400 speakers who discussed Technology, Society, Governance; Sustainability, Mobility and Innovation and Startups . In addition, there were about 450 exhibitors from over 500 cities.