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AT&T rolls out ‘smart cities’ initiative

Dallas, Atlanta and Chicago are teaming with AT&T on innovations such as traffic monitoring and grid management. (rmnoa357 /

Telecommunications giant AT&T is jumping on the “smart cities” bandwagon. David Morris reports for Fortune that the largest U. S. mobile provider announced Tuesday that Atlanta, Chicago and Dallas are the first traunch of cities to sign on.

Technologies such as traffic monitoring, electric grid management and gunfire detection are set to be deployed, the article says. The carrier plans to partner with Cisco, Ericsson, GE, IBM, Qualcomm and other companies.

Re/code explains here that AT&T’s portfolio includes sensor-enabled traffic signals that adjust to road conditions and intelligent lighting systems that dim automatically. It also would deploy technology that wirelessly matches empty parking spaces with drivers. To convince city leaders to incur the upfront costs, AT&T must convince them that the investments save money over time and solve recurring problems, AT&T Mobility CEO Glenn Lurie tells Re/code.

AT&T joins a growing list of corporations that see enormous business potential in the global push to retrofit existing cities and build new ones. The “smart cities” sector could be a $1.5 trillion marketplace by 2020, according to projections by Frost & Sullivan. The announcement was made at the AT&T Developer Summit in Las Vegas, an event held in conjunction with this week’s Consumer Electronics Show.


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