Energy management, security, and intelligent transportation are just a few of the new technologies that are coming to cities. As technologies advance, city officials are deciding how they will build these smart cities. How will this impact construction? A look at new technologies available provides a glimpse into the connected city of the future.

The technology options for cities are vast. Silver Spring Networks, www.silverspringnet.com, Redwood City, Calif., for example, recently debuted a network-as-a-service option for cities aimed at helping them more easily deploy smart-city services.

The idea of creating an entire smart-city infrastructure can seem daunting. But Silver Spring Networks wants to take some of the burden off the city by providing the services needed to deploy and manage smart city networks on behalf of cities. In addition to providing management help, the as-a-service model also removes some of the upfront investment cost a city would need to pay.

One area looking to integrate smart technology is the State of Qatar. As part of Qatar’s National Vision for 2030, the state has set goals of enhancing education, environmental stewardship, and economic growth. Technology will play a large role in achieving these goals, and recently two companies announced a partnership that will impact the initiative.

NetComm Wireless, www.netcommwireless.com, Sydney, Australia, and Vodafone Qatar, www.vodafone.qa, Newbury, England, will partner to enable smart city applications, including security systems, intelligent transport systems, smart metering, and smart medical devices. The companies will extend Vodafone Qatar’s fixed and mobile networks to the devices and machines that make these types of connected services possible.

The partnership grew out of NetComm Wireless’ existing relationship with Vodafone Global Enterprise, which enabled delivery of Vodafone MachineLink 3G across the company’s markets. MachineLink 3G is a compact HSPA+ router designed for M2M applications. The device was developed by NetComm Wireless and has been certified by Vodafone Group for use on the Vodafone Qatar network.

Through the use of the Vodafone MachineLink 3G solution, customers in Qatar will be able to gather realtime data from assets, no matter where they are located. By centralizing information in one location, smart-city systems will be easier to manage and deploy.

The idea of the smart city is attractive because of the benefits it can provide not only for quality of life and economic growth, but also for resource conservation and cost savings. By creating a more efficient and connected community, cities ensure they are looking to the future.