New Smart Nation Platform will provide the technical architecture in Singapore’s ICT blueprint
Singapore is gearing up to be the world’s first Smart Nation, building on the achievements of the intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015) masterplan. To support the vision and enable a Smart Nation, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) will be strengthening the hard and soft infrastructure holistically.
This includes developing the Smart Nation Platform (SNP) and initiatives that boost soft infrastructure, such as creating standards for Internet of Things @ Home and building of talent in new areas like Games Science. Fifteen smart solutions will also be trialled at the Jurong Lake District (JLD), giving a glimpse of what a Smart Nation could look like.
Infographic: Towards Being World’s First Smart Nation (click on the image for bigger view)
Announced today by Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister of Communications and Information at the opening of the Infocomm Media Business Exchange 2014, he said, “We believe that a Smart Nation can become a reality if we successfully combine policy, people and technology in a concerted fashion. A key component in our Smart Nation vision is the Smart Nation Platform or SNP. As part of the SNP, we will further our capabilities in pervasive connectivity, by building new infrastructure and common technical architecture to support an innovative ecosystem across Singapore”.
The SNP gives a strong boost to Singapore’s hard infrastructure. On top of enhancing the existing connectivity in Singapore with technologies such as that used in HetNet, the SNP is aimed at bringing together a nationwide sensor network and data analytics abilities, providing better situational awareness through data collection, and efficient sharing of collected sensor data.
SNP will thus comprise of key components such as the communications backbone, sensor networks, data analytics and real-world applications that will empower individuals, government and businesses alike. The SNP will be developed in various phases, with the first phase focusing on the connectivity and sensor aspects expected to be available by 2015.
In boosting the communications backbone, IDA will also be starting trials for the Heterogeneous Network (HetNet). HetNet is expected to allow for seamless connectivity, and the trials will validate technologies and capabilities of HetNet. A briefing on how the industry can participate in the trials is slated for 1 July 2014.
Various Smart Nation technologies will also be deployed and tested at JLD, which offers a “live environment and living lab”. As part of a Smart Nation to drive innovation and creation of new applications and services, services like smart queue monitoring, smart mobile navigation guides and autonomous buggies are to be trialled in the JLD, helping to bring benefits of these solutions closer to citizens and businesses.
Mr Steve Leonard, Executive Deputy Chairman, IDA said, “We have made great headway in just over a year from conceptualisation to real action in building Singapore as the world’s first Smart Nation. One of the first building blocks for this vision to become reality is the development of a Smart Nation Platform (SNP). SNP will serve as a foundation on which companies of all sizes, as well as government agencies can experiment and innovate with new ways to collect, move and interpret data in order to better serve citizens. We welcome great ideas and input from across all communities and industries as we work to build Singapore into a Smart Nation.”
Part of the soft infrastructure in a Smart Nation also includes technical standards. IDA’s Internet of Things @ Home initiative will be looking to identify open standards which seek to enable seamless interoperability between connected smart devices as they are applied in a home setting. This will raise the potential of these devices in providing stronger benefits and enhanced user experience to home dwellers.
For citizens and businesses to reap the full benefits of Smart Nation innovation, services and solutions could also be equipped with easy to use intuitive interfaces or gesture control and services in virtual reality. Such interfaces and services can be developed by applying Game Science and Technology, an area that IDA is newly exploring, to ascertain its use in non-game industries such as healthcare and education.
Visitors to imbX 2014 which includes the CommunicAsia 2014 Exhibition will be treated to some of the latest technologies that the Singapore tech ecosystem has to offer. IDA will be showcasing Smart Nation possibilities at the exhibition. They include the replication of HetNet deployment through the integration of cellular and WI-FI networks; analytics solutions by Singapore-based tech start-ups; and the showcase of Smart Nation technologies to be tested in JLD. These include a District Management System which uses video and image analytics to estimate the level of cleanliness of a designated area.
Photo-Daniel Cheong (used with permission)