Singapore's smart nation strategy pays off: minister

03 Jun 2015

Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister for Communications and Information, delivered the opening address for CommunicAsia2015, focusing on the concrete results that have come from Singapore’s nine-year path to becoming a “smart nation.”

Nine years ago Singapore embarked on the journey to develop its next generation national broadband network. In 2010, Singapore was ranked 35th in the world for download and upload speed according to the Ookla NetIndex. Today the country ranks first. Singapore is at the top of the World Economic Forum’s Networked Readiness Index.

To demonstrate Singapore’s wireless experience, the Infocomm Development Authority launched a crowdsourcing app to gather data on mobile coverage and speeds. The results of this anonymized data has been shared with the country’s three telcos.

Beyond connectivity, “smart nation” projects now include smart sensor networks for water and air, smart logistics that enable interoperability standards throughout the supply chain, and smart health-assist featuring smart sensors in the homes of the elderly or chronically ill.

Ibrahim also spoke of Singapore’s new series of tech challenges to enable individuals and government to tackle urban challenges. The first challenge will be to come up with a solution around video analytics with potential benefits in transportation, healthcare, retail and security.

Lindy Wee, CEO of Singapore Exhibition Services, spoke of the major trends the industry faces in 2015: 5G, the Internet of Things, cloud services, and “smart” devices.

Governments in particular are increasingly turning to these technologies to enhance productivity and reduce reliance on manpower and other resources limitations, she noted.


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