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Smart Cities: Step into the City of the Future

Experts predict that the Internet of Things (IoT) market will continue to grow exponentially in coming years. In 2015, there were about 15.4 billion connected devices, and according to IHS, this number is set to reach 30.7 billion by 2020 and 75.4 billion by 2025. Intel forecasts an even more substantial amount of connected devices: 200 billion by 2020. With all of those connected devices, it’s hard not to wonder what life could be like in an even more connected world. Let’s imagine a nearby day in the life of smart cities, connected with more IoT technology.

Wake up and Go to Work

Your alarm goes off twenty minutes early. Your smartwatch that knows what time you need to get to work, but it also takes into account weather and traffic conditions. Today, trains are delayed due to construction, so you need to leave early to get to the office by 9:00 AM, which is why your alarm went off sooner than usual.

You look at your phone and remotely turn on your coffee maker while you hop in the shower and get ready for work. As you get dressed, you ask your smart device for the weather and pack an umbrella just in case it rains. Your phone tells you the exact moment you need to walk out of the door to catch the train downtown to go to work.

As you wait for the train, counting down the seconds to its arrival, you look at your phone which lets you know which cars are full and which have room. You see the second car from the front has seats available, so you move in that direction to enjoy a more comfortable ride into work.

While on the train, you realize there were a few around-the-house tasks you wanted to get done, so you remotely turn on your washing machine and turn down the air conditioning to not waste energy (and to save on your monthly bill). You also make sure all lights are turned off. After giving off a big yawn on the train, you decide to check out your sleep app to learn that some tossing and turning kept you from getting a full eight hours.

smart cities

Arrival at Work

You realize you’re a few minutes early, so you walk to the local coffee shop to grab your favorite drink. Sensors detect that you’re there and send your order to the barista. You wirelessly pay, grab your drink, and go to the office.

Using your keyless smart lock access, you enter the office. Sensors and heat maps detect which workplaces are in use, and where there is room to spare, so you set up your laptop in an open conference room for the day. By using virtual assistants, your day runs smoothly, and you feel energetic as you leave the office. You decide to hit the gym before heading home.

After Work and Home

Your smartwatch monitors your heart rate and physical exercise, so you can make sure you get a good workout at the gym. This information is coupled with your sleep schedule to produce a full health report.

You decide to take a shared car service home instead of the train, but since you’re still cooling down from the workout, you turn on the AC so that your house will be nice and cool when you walk inside. You also ensure that your smart sous-vide has started up, cooking a steak to the perfect amount of doneness just before your arrival. When you’re five minutes away, you also turn on the lights to prepare for your arrival. You step inside to the perfect home, ready to relax and enjoy a nice dinner before settling in for the night.


  1. IHS Markit, The mobile and telecommunications landscape is changing faster than ever before.
  2. Intel, A Guide to the Internet of Things.

Case Study: IoT is redefining the customer experience. Nokia case study.

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