That future is closer than you would think. Mobility through wireless connection is the key to creating future smart cities. The move to the next generation of wireless technologies will see a quantum shift in speed, response time (latency) and the volume of data able to be transmitted in real time. Already known as “5G” (fifth generation) mobile networks have the potential to provide the wireless networks that will bring devices and the human element closer together than ever before.
When Kevin Ashton, from MIT’s AutoID lab, coined the term "the Internet of Things" (IoT) as the last century closed1, could he have imagined the wireless ecosystems that now enable businesses and governments to connect to their IoT devices, including remotes, dashboards, networks, gateways, analytics, data storage, and security to redefine supply chains, open up new medical advances and see vast global informal citizen communities replacing mainstream media?
Now, as we move well into the digital age, connectivity is at the forefront of how we want to move within, work in and between, and connect to, our towns, our cities, and even our countries.
The mobile phone, wearable wireless devices, our houses and buildings, cars, and even infrastructure, such as traffic control, will all connect and interact.
At the personal level, whether working around a base station, or wearing a connected device, we expect things to not only work seamlessly, but also to be safe. But in order for this to occur, we have to understand what the synergies are between our environment and the technologies we deploy.
This means regulatory controls must understand the new technology of 5G, interconnectivity, and the gist of how it works, and keep ahead of the evolution of wireless technology.
Australia has always been among the early adopters of technology and has constantly taken a proactive approach to integrating new technologies with the regulatory environment that protects its communities, while enabling innovation and prosperity.
To be responsibly future-ready there are a few key questions to ponder:
1In a 1999 paper for Proctor & Gamble about improving its business by linking RFID (radio frequency identification) information to the Internet