Electronic waste, a byproduct of the firm establishment of the digital age, has become a major concern in present times. Since most electronic waste is nonbiodegradable, it pollutes the environment when dumped and can present health hazards to the wildlife around the site. This has led to the need for smart waste management systems that can automate the recycling process of electronic waste and properly dispose of the remainder. This is likely to become a leading contributor in the global smart cities market in the coming years.
By application, the smart cities market was led by the smart transportation sector, whose contribution to the smart cities market is estimated to be US$140.8 bn by 2016 and rise to close to US$216 bn by 2019. Apart from smart transportation, smart security and smart industrial automation are likely to receive increasing demand in the coming years.
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In terms of geography, the solid government support to smart city technologies in North America is expected to help the regional market retain its dominant share in the global market in the coming years. The increasing use of advanced traffic management systems in North America is likely to be crucial to the market’s growth.
The global smart cities market is expected to be valued at US$1,265.85 bn by 2019 due to the solid growth prospects for it across the world. The information presented in this review is based on a Transparency Market Research report, titled, ‘Global Smart Cities Market – Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2013 – 2019.’
The competitive landscape of the global smart cities market features a number of players operating in various areas of smart city development. Of these, Siemens AG, IBM Corporation, and ABB Ltd. have wide product catalogs spanning several areas of smart city technology. The market is likely to remain extremely competitive in the coming years due to the entry of several new players, who can be accommodated due to the abundant availability of raw materials and increasing government support to smart city infrastructure.
Increasing Environmental Awareness Likely to Benefit Smart Cities Market
One of the key drivers for the global smart cities market is the increasing environmental awareness among the global population. This has led to significant popular demand for eco-centric smart city projects. Governments have also been supportive of smart city initiatives that aim to reduce wastage and boost the economic development of the city. The development of solar energy as a viable alternative energy source is a key contributor to the growth of the global smart cities market.
The consistent migration to urban areas is another crucial driver for the global smart cities market. The lack of significant economic opportunities in rural areas and the reduction in the amount of arable land have led to many rural citizens moving to cities to seek better economic prospects. This has led to an increasing strain on the natural resources supplying the city, resulting in popular support for smart city solutions, which can reduce the exploitation of natural resources while keeping the economic development intact.
On the other hand, concerns about the security of the data collected in order to implement smart city infrastructure persist due to the increasing occurrence of cyber-crime. The consistent technological advancement in the smart cities industry is likely to lead to the development of systems with comprehensive security features, but some risk of data leaks is likely to remain due to the dynamic nature of malware and hacking.