San Jose is aiming to become a full fledged smart city by introducing technology from a home-grown start. According to a report by the San Jose Mercury News, the city is working with Internet of Things start-up anyCOMM, to introduced smart devices that collect a range of information from all around the city.
The devices, to be deployed atop the city’s streetlights, will collect data such as traffic conditions, and relay the information back to a central control system via mobile connections.
The first trial will be on 148 streetlights and around San Jose International Airport with devices equipped with sensors that detect anything from earthquakes to gunshots, to pedestrian traffic. The devices will also act as Wi-Fi hotspots and be linked to the streetlights themselves – so it can tell the system to turn off the lights if no one is around.
The one question for anyCOMM is how it will monetise the system. According to the report, San Jose is not paying for the system, but rather, anyCOMM will seek to develop revenue streams elsewhere, like selling the Wi-Fi hotspots as a service, for businesses, or to telcos as an offload medium for cellular data traffic.
Another issue raised by the report is security. The devices will work over a virtual private network with encryption while the data is stored both on the device itself and in a data centre.