Connecting Cities of the Future in India Requires Proven, Scalable and Standards-Based Innovation


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Hugh McDermott, Silver Spring Networks VP of Business Development for Asia
Hugh McDermott, Silver Spring Networks VP of Business Development for Asia

Guest blog post by Hugh McDermott, Silver Spring Networks VP of Business Development for Asia

Silver Spring Networks was honored to participate in the recent Department of Commerce Smart City Trade Mission with Deputy Secretary Bruce Andrews and other business delegates to India. As a leading provider of Internet of Things (IOT) IPv6 platforms that connect smart energy, smart city and other durable infrastructure assets, we applaud the recent Government of India Smart City initiatives sponsored by Prime Minister Modi to drive infrastructure modernization. Traveling with Deputy Secretary Andrews provided access to numerous high-level decision makers at the federal, state and city level, as well as private sector companies, who are looking to take the initial step forward to create smarter cities in India. Many were interested to hear more around our new smart grid and smart city partnership in India with Calcutta Electricity Supply Corporation (CESC), India’s leading fully integrated electrical company with over 2.9 million customer connections and serving over 17 million people in the state of West Bengal. 

The most important thing we reiterate to decision-makers both in the U.S. and abroad is that they should look for innovation that has already been proven at scale. With a footprint of over 22 million devices connected on five continents covering 2 million square miles and covering 80 million people, Silver Spring has an international track record of helping cities achieve environmental and sustainability, public health and safety, economic development and other pressing modernization initiates. For example, Paris is reducing its public energy consumption by 30% of the next decade by connecting all its street lights and traffic controls across the city. Copenhagen, aiming to become the first carbon neutral capital by 2025, has a citywide network that helps create a safer commuter cycling network. Singapore is connecting millions of its energy customers with real-time pricing information on energy providers as part of the government’s deregulation program. Miami and South Florida are leveraging smart meters, intelligent grid devices and connecting the world’s largest street light program to provider higher service reliability for customers during hurricane season. With McKinsey Research estimating a potential economic impact of up to $11.1 trillion per year in 2025 for IOT applications including in city settings, we’re reaching the watershed moment in India to help the country meet its 21st century modernization objectives. 

We also encourage decision makers to ensure any innovation they are considering for smart cities has the widest applicability possible through open standards technology. CESC, for example, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Silver Spring to collaborate in offering smart grid and smart city services to other organizations in West Bengal and throughout India, an approach that can only be seamlessly integrated through a standards-based, multi-application platform. Furthermore, by leveraging the same network for the deployment of additional smart city applications over time, a utility or city can greatly reduce long-term costs and accelerate speed of deployment for these new services. Our robust partner ecosystem and emphasis on open standards empower utilities and cities to have the greatest selection of solutions and applications with limitless extensibility, enabling them to forge their own path to the smart city and smart energy future.

The Trade Mission covered a lot of ground over the course of the week, and we’re grateful to the entire team at the Department of Commerce for organizing and facilitating meaningful connections between U.S. business leaders and our counterparts in India. We returned to the U.S. energized to help India in its mission to accelerate its growth for the 21st century, and look forward to continuing conversations on how proven, standards-based technology can help transform those future goals into today’s reality. 

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Last updated: 2016-03-07 14:02

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