Getting the Infrastructure Right is fundamental to your Smart City

By Rich Hollins, Divisional Director for Wireless

If the term “Smart City” is alien to you then you must have been under a poorly connected rock for the last few years. For those of you that are new to the idea or require a refresher course, this blog will give a reasonably broad insight into the subject.

small cells in smart cities

What is a Smart City?

wireless climber monopole

Smart Cities rely on infrastructure to function as much as we as humans rely on oxygen to breathe.

In recent times, the advancements/rollout in fibre broadband have been staggering with so many players being involved, coupled with this there has been a resurgence in the development of wireless infrastructure with the deployment of 5G.

5G will be one of the main enablers for the Smart City dream. The word “dream” is going to be key going because everyone’s dreams are different. Some people dream of winning the lotto, having children or perhaps meeting their favourite celebrity.

By nature, people have different desires/needs in life and the same is true when it comes to Smart Cities. To build the cities of the future we need to understand what each member of the Smart City Ecosystem needs/aspires to have.


1. Commuters

Indigo EV Charging

Commuters will arguably play the biggest role in the Smart City Ecosystem as they will have the greatest requirements via EV charging, smart parking, smart traffic lights, accurate digital signage and the much-debated autonomous vehicles. They are also going to prove invaluable sources of information as part of the internet of moving things. Commuters whether they are driving, cycling or getting public transport to work act as sensors feeding back valuable up to date data which can be then utilised to make others journeys seamless.

2. Workers

People Icon

Obviously, the majority of commuters are also going to fall into the bracket of the worker bees. The key want and use workers have is for a smart workplace, where technology enables people to work better, work more efficiently and communicate better through the use of collaborative tools, sensors etc.

Some of the trends in this space being Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), Wellness Focus and increased attention on Cybersecurity.

3. Business Owners


Any business owner will be striving to make their workplace a smart office as discussed above with communication aided by fast and constant connectivity. Whereas workers are happy to have their fast connection so they can access data quickly and communicate with clients and co-workers, this isn’t enough for business owners.

Businesses are always looking for a competitive advantage and the embracing of smart technologies can achieve this. A simple adoption of a full-fibre broadband connection will mean faster uploads of documents and a reliable connection for video calls. Any savings in time mean that workers will have additional time to work on higher priority tasks thus increasing productivity. It also means that a business’s geographical location isn’t as important as it once was.

4. Stay At Home Parents/Children

We all know how busy being a parent can be whether we have experienced it first hand, or have seen the tiredness in our friend’s eyes. Any way that makes this easier is undoubtedly welcome and with the dawning of smart cities, the life of a stay at home parent can markedly improve. Firstly, there will be no need to leave the house for essential household products as these can be delivered in a timely manner and can be easily tracked. A Smart City will enable parents to homeschool their children, a trend that has become more popular since the Covid pandemic.

From the children’s perspective, we know all too well that if they are without their smart device for more than five minutes, they feel like they are missing a limb and the same is true if a connection drops. Thankfully for all parents out there with the advancements in small cells and the rollout of fibre means that even when you are out walking the streets, your children should be entertained with a constant internet connection. [Read our blog about Small Cells, Big Challenges]

The Smart City of the Future

Fast Forward iconIndigo is at the forefront of huge generational shifts in the way mobile and fibre networks are designed, deployed and implemented. But what’s interesting this time around are the technical and logistical complexities of the infrastructure which puts Indigo in an ideal position to design, build and support the 5G, wireless and fibre networks required for a smart city to work efficiently.

If you want to find out why Indigo are best placed to build the infrastructure for Smart Cities, visit our solutions page.

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