Cambridge wheels out latest smart city platform, ready for devs

Got a good Internet of Things problem-solving idea? Try it out with us, says city

Cambridge bikes photo MK Jones via Shutterstock
Bicycles in Cambridge. Pic: Shutterstock

Brainbox greenhouse Cambridge has rolled out the latest stage of its smart city network, the Intelligent City Platform, which talks to the city’s existing LoRaWAN Internet of Things network.

The platform centralises data gathered from sensors already deployed around the English city, ready for later analysis. It is operated in conjunction with the University of Cambridge, which has already had significant input into the existing IoT network setup.

The idea is that real-time data is available through the platform for developers and the like to build apps and solve problems. Examples suggested by the Smart Cambridge organisation include predicting bus arrival times - a handy use case, as Londoners used to the metropolis’ iBus system of roadside beacons and sensors on buses will attest to.

Unlike Cambridge, however, London’s system was conceived and implemented entirely at the behest of Transport for London, the city’s transport authority, and has been in operation for around a decade.

“We have a unique opportunity to harness the brainpower and business might of Greater Cambridge to find innovative solutions to challenges faced by our region, and indeed all growing cities. That’s why taking a collaborative approach is the best way forward for Smart Cambridge and could lead the way forward for other smart cities,” intoned local councillor Francis Burkitt in a canned statement from Smart Cambridge.

Cambridge is also home to a branch of the government’s IoTUK Boost programme, which aims to funnel public money into promising IoT-focused startups that make use of the city’s LoRaWAN network. It is being administered in the city by top techies from the Cambridge Wireless group. ®

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