A CityTree? Yes, please!

Categories: Connectivity

If you’re interested in future trends and innovations, Mobile World Congress in Barcelona is the place to be right now. And as one of the most trending and important topics, smart cities are front and center. At our booth, it’s all about sustainability and people-friendly digital services.

Air quality is a hotly debated topic all across Europe. And while banning cars may or may not help, one solution that definitely increases air quality without forcing commuters and families to leave their beloved cars behind is a so-called CityTree provided by the startup Green City Solutions. The moss growing on its surface acts as a biological air filter. Put simply, it lives on the dust particles and nitrogen oxides that we breathe out into the air. The maximum output is just under 700,000 m3 of air per day, which is roughly the same amount of air in 180 hot-air balloons. IoT technology automatically regulates the supply of water and nutrients while sensors provide detailed information on the environmental performance and status of the CityTree. And it doesn’t stop there because the CityTree can also be used as a hotspot to improve overall coverage in a city. It’s a cool place to chill, isn’t it?

Intelligent traffic control is another one of my favorite topics. Because nobody likes spending hours in traffic jams each week commuting to work. Fortunately, Deutsche Telekom’s T-Labs are developing and testing an AI-based solution that measures and analyzes urban traffic flow and provides recommendations for traffic light control. A pilot project at Ernst-Reuter-Platz in Berlin saw a reduction in traffic of 20%! Imagine what we could do with all the extra time we would get back if we reduced the amount of time we spend trapped in our cars.

And last but not least, another innovation that’s set to have a major impact on our lives is the smart city app. We’re all familiar with endless queues and drawn-out processes in public administration. Just think about how long it takes to register in a new city or get a new passport. A smart city app would make all of these processes digital. But it can also do so much more, for example, providing access to libraries, bike sharing, swimming pools, and other public services. Ultimately, it’s also a great way to encourage citizens to take part in decision-making processes and allow them to provide direct feedback to city officials.

Let’s make our cities greener and more livable places! #takepart