Smart City Investments Will Reach $135B In 2021

Suburban and metropolitan municipalities around the globe still explore projects for digital transformation. The latest report by the International Data Corporation (IDC) indicates that smart city applications are projected to reach $80 billion in 2018, reports Telecoms.

IDC offers an in-depth look at the tech investments connected with a variety of smart city priorities and uses. IDC believes spending will ramp up over the forecast period ending in 2021, growing to $135 billion in 2021 as these initiatives gain widespread use and credibility.

“Smart cities have recently evolved from a collection of discrete flagship projects to a sizeable market opportunity that will drive significant technology investments in 2018 and beyond,” said Serena Da Rold, program manager at IDC.

IDC believes that strategic priorities will push digital transformation across cities of all sizes, but the research done by analysts indicates that the focus of investment varies significantly by region.

Smart cities are developed when several initiatives are aligned to leverage investments, make use of a shared IT platform to cut down on service time or costs and share data across systems.

Intelligent transportation, data-driven public safety, and resilient energy are the priorities likely to see the most investment in 2018.

Two notable use cases are intelligent traffic and transit and fixed video surveillance when it comes to spending, with smart outdoor lighting and environmental monitoring.

These use cases are attractive to investors in many areas, but the focus shifts by region. In the United States, Japan, and Western Europe, intelligent traffic and transit will be the top priority when it comes to investment.

Meanwhile, the leading use case in China (simultaneously the second largest one in the US) will be fixed visual surveillance, while environmental monitoring will be relatively more important in Japan.

The US will be the biggest market for smart city technology, with spending predicted to reach $22 billion in 2018. China follows behind with spending believed to be $21 billion by 2018.

The countries share similar growth trajectories with five-year compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) of 19 percent and 19.3 percent. Latin America and Canada will see the fastest spending growth with CAGRs of 28.7 percent and 22.5 percent respectively.