A recent report by the International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that by 2020 the number of devices connected to the internet will exceed 30 billion. This web of connected devices, or Internet of Things (IoT), gives government agencies a new and unique opportunity to leverage innovative technology to provide better services to citizens.
While IoT is still an early stage technology, such devices have long been used before the concept was fully developed. For instance, the City of Los Angeles has 145,000 street lights and 4,500 intersections. By connecting these devices with IoT technology, agencies can collect data with sensors throughout the city to gain insights on traffic patterns. This allows them to see areas of congestion, or where particular intersections are jammed. With these insights, the city can more effectively prepare for emergency response dispatch.
With the capabilities of IoT, government agencies can make use of flexible and adaptable interfaces to develop applications and serve citizens more effectively. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is using IoT devices to monitor and test air quality for possibly dangerous environments. This allows them to send alerts to citizens’ mobile devices informing them of potential hazardous situations. The United States Department of Veteran’s Affairs is using IoT sensors to monitor the structural integrity of its buildings during earthquakes to notify administrators when they need to evacuate patients and staff. And the city of New Orleans has deployed IoT systems and devices to streamline how 9-1-1 dispatchers communicate with police officers and first responders. By harnessing data and creating insights, emergency personnel can make quicker and smarter decisions.
Learn more about how government agencies are using IoT to better serve citizens with IDC’s recent report, How Government Organizations Are Looking at IoT.
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 IDC: How Government Organizations Are Looking at IoT, Apr 2017 | Doc #US42464217