Cisco and KPMG have formed an alliance to deliver Smart City initiatives in Australia, with a goal of accelerating adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) to help make cities more liveable, workable and sustainable.
The alliance will bring together KPMG's IoT capabilities and Cisco's global technology capabilities, providing city leaders across Australia with end-to-end advisory, technology and related services, backed by platform, support and operations capabilities within the framework of an open ecosystem.
The alliance also aims to concentrate on developing a number of "useful tools" for the leaders of Smart City programs.
These will include financial and business case modelling; design thinking; Smart City architecture; change management; data and analytics, master service integration; solution design and implementation; cyber security; and optimisation and operational services.
Services will be delivered around Cisco Smart+Connected Digital Platform, which is already deployed in many cities and countries across the world, including Adelaide, Paris, Copenhagen, Kansas City, Bucharest, Hungary, Dubrovnik, and Bengaluru.
Cisco A/NZ chief technology officer, Kevin Bloch, said the platform brings together data from a variety of sources, including sensors and existing information systems, to enable the city to holistically manage infrastructure and services.
"Connectivity and the consolidation and contextualisation of data are some of the keys to unlocking the full value from Smart City initiatives.
"We are excited to partner with KPMG to provide the full suite of services and technologies to enable Australian Smart Cities, Smart Precincts and Smart Communities. Together, we will build collaboration opportunities between government, business and academia," he said.
According to Bloch, the businesses will also work with international standards and practices, ensuring the development of an open and interoperable architecture and building upon both organisations' support of the Hypercat standard.
KPMG Australia IoT practice head, Piers Hogarth-Scott, said by combining KPMG and Cisco's complementary capabilities across a broad range of end-to-end Smart Cities services, the strategic alliance will offer smart solutions to clients, as well as drive forward the overall Smart City sector in Australia.
"New IoT technologies are disrupting how cities and towns work across the globe to help make them more liveable, workable and sustainable. From smart parking to utilities management - the opportunities for governments at all levels to drive better and more cost-effective services are endless.
"With technology changing so quickly, Smart City leaders face complex decisions, with limited access to actionable insight and therefore limited ability to automate," he added.
With Gartner reporting that smart commercial buildings would be the highest user of IoT until 2017, after which smart homes would take the lead with just over 1 billion connected things in 2018, developing a Smart Cities strategy has been at the forefront of some businesses' plans.
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