ITS World Congress is over – call for action

October 30, 2012

ITS World Congress in Vienna is over. A well organized high-profile event with ministers, a grand opening event and a grand ball. The large exhibition halls were full of technology and complex drawings, the seminar program extensive and ministers from all over the world attended. We have seen the movie before: there was full agreement among delegates, speakers and exhibitors also at the 19:th ITS World Congress that ITS is important to save the world, increase safety and security and improve efficiency for people, organizations and societies. A lot of things are  happening in the field but still too many “one road here and one road there pilots”.

But there are three fairly new enablers in the ITS market that can make things happen big way:
  • – the smartphones and pads allowing us to visualize complex things and deliver relevant real-time information for powerful decision-making
  • – the Open Data initiatives carried out in Europe and elsewhere enabling developers to access enormous amounts of relevant data for innovative ITS solutions
  • – the rapidly growing M2M market is feeding Service Enablers with data and together with the Open Data sources this enables faster and more cost efficient development and maintenance of applications.
We have what we need to start taking real advantage of ITS now. Decision makers need to be brave enough to make the right decisions: ensure a strategy for management of data, use of M2M, etc. then go from pilots to action, open up the data and let the entrepreneurs figure out what users want. This will help us realize the benefits of ITS in terms of efficiency, sustainability, security and convenience.

Mobile World Congress 2012

March 5, 2012

Mobile World Congress 2012 is over and to me it was a busy congress without any exciting major themes or news. Nobody is using Bluetooth headsets any longer, most exhibitors used apps on pads and smartphones to visualize what they deliver and the expected grand return of Nokia never happened. Among the most interesting things were Mozilla’s Open Web Devices – a mobile open source os built-in html5 – and Wireless Power Consortium with their prototypes.

M2M was presented, discussed and promoted almost everywhere but it was more the presence of M2M at the congress than what was demonstrated that made impact on me. Once again there was a Connected House filled up with consumer products connected to Internet and a couple of cars outside. The Embedded SIM was demonstrated by GSMA in partnership with Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient and it was cool to see over the air provisioning of operator credentials in action. This ability to change mobile operator over the air will make life easier for owners of M2M installations and vendors of connected things.

The take-a-way from MWC 2012 was the M2M momentum in the industry. Nothing surprising yet good to see. I heard statements like “M2M is one of the few growth areas we are investing in” over and over again during the week. It feels like M2M is here to stay now.


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