Smart Cities? It’s all about the lamp posts….

Our Sales and Marketing Director, Nick Randall, explores why lamp posts may be the golden ticket that cities hoping to get smart are looking for . . . 

Lamp posts are great. Lamp posts are everywhere. The only thing not to like about a lamp post – except the ones that are located right outside your bedroom window – is that it’s a weird word to spell in English.

In the context of a smart city, the humble lamp post is of course reborn for a variety of technical reasons. But in the Smart City world, all is not well: it is always something of a disappointment to me when I see that yet another municipality has signed over the real estate rights to their lamp posts.

Why am I bothered?

Because we at Zeetta Networks have a vision of a smart city in which the Telecoms infrastructure is shared so investment can be pooled across public and private sectors. Lamp posts are necessary for a quality network in a truly smart city, showing smart joined up thinking, and creating an environment for successful 5G smart city deployments – not to mention the enhancements to everyone’s daily lives that we all seek.

Why are lamp posts in such high demand?

Lamp posts are in demand as real estate for 5G and smart city technologies because:

  • They have an electrical power source
  • They are sufficiently deployed to meet the short radio range and density requirements of 5G and other modern wireless comms
  • You can run fixed or optical networks to lamp posts easily

They are, in fact, so useful that every Network Operator could simply require access to them to immediately gain from these benefits.

This is why I’m dismayed when cities sign the rights to their lamp posts away to one single organisation.

What should municipalities do with their lamp posts?

We want to see a concept of a municipality owning their assets, partnering with organisations to build the network infrastructure. Then, using a software control platform we like to call the ‘City Operating System’, a city can easily enable that infrastructure to be shared under commercial agreement – multiple times over.

Why should we care? Because a smart city like this will generate more revenue for the population the city serves, offer a higher quality infrastructure, and enable 5G connectivity, among other benefits.

That is why we have created NetOS®, a Software Defined Networking platform that enables infrastructures to be virtualised, so any smart city can be designed to enable shared ownership. This technology uses our patented Network Virtualisation or ‘slicing’ technology, and you can see a live demonstration of NetOS® by reaching out and getting in touch.