Singapore tops Smart City rankings

Written by NTN staff

The Asian country scores highest on a range of criteria within transportation and other urban innovation. Dubai comes second partly thanks to its blockchain projects.

Singapore has embraced concepts like Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) and Freight-as-a-Service (FaaS) to maintain its leading role as a transportation and freight hub with driverless taxis, autonomous shuttles and platooning trials and projects, according to ABI Research.

Singapore’s Smart Nation initiative addresses a wide range of urban issues linked to high-density living that has found favour with the research firm in its latest index, which highlights adoption of next-generation technologies and “disruptive smart city paradigms” as structural solutions for hard problems.

Second-placed Dubai also emerged as a smart city leader, excelling in innovation, especially related to blockchain ambitions. The state is leading the way in the implementation of distributed ledgers with all government transactions to be processed via blockchain technology by 2030. ABI noted that Dubai even has a ‘Happiness Index’ which monitors the quality of public services and is aimed at improving overall citizen satisfaction.

“Both cities also score high across most of the implementation criteria like congestion management, crime prevention, and safety,” Dominique Bonte, Vice President End Markets at ABI Research.

The rest of the list has London in third place (largely due to its advanced open data policies enabling a wider ecosystem of smart city application developers and start-ups), followed by New York, Paris, Tokyo, Seoul, Los Angeles, Shanghai and Beijing. The two Chinese cities rank well in terms of smart meters and smart grids, bike sharing, vehicle electrification, smart parking, and smart cards, but they continue to face formidable issues related to congestion and pollution.

Each city was analysed according to their innovation programs, strategies and implementation achievements measured through verifiable metrics for congestion, air quality, GDP, crime rates, and cost of living.

In more Singapore related news, Singapore's Changi airport is testing a facial recognition system it hopes will speed passengers through the facility.

Reuters reports proposals could see the use cameras mounted on lamp posts that scan faces to ID passengers. One potentially welcome use of facial recognition could be to spot passengers who have missed the last boarding call for their flight. In the future, it might even replace the need for need passports.

But the plans have also has raised privacy concerns among consumer groups.

The newest terminal at Changi, T4, is already using facial recognition for self-service check-in options as well as bag drop, immigration and boarding.