Intel: Wireless Tech Will Improve Cities

Intel on Thursday announced it was launching a pilot program in 13 communities worldwide to look into how wireless technology and innovations in computer applications could enhance the quality of services for governments, businesses, and citizens.

The cities to be included in the test are: Cleveland, Corpus Christi, Philadelphia and Portland in the United States. Worldwide, the test would include Taipei, Taiwan; Mangaratiba, Brazil; Dusseldorf, Germany; Gyor, Hungary; Jerusalem, Israel; Principality of Monaco; Seoul, South Korea; Osaka, Japan; and Westminster, United Kingdom.

Known as the "Digital Communities" Initiative, the project is focused on enhancing government efficiency, growing urban economies and improving the quality of life, all while bringing technology to a broader segment of the population.

"We are working closely with these communities to help them take the next step and harness the benefits of wireless technology," Anand Chandrasekher, vice president and director, Intel Sales and Marketing Group said. "The benefits include lower cost of operations, enhanced public safety and security, and a foundation for growth and competitiveness."

Already, Philadelphia has begun to closely work with Intel as it progresses in efforts to make its citywide Wi-Fi network a reality. According to the city, the initiative makes wireless more than just a way to get broadband access to every street corner.

"We believe our wireless network will ensure efficiencies for government, business and citizens," Dianah Neff, the city's Chief Information Officer said in a statement.

Other cities are also using wireless to improve city services in various ways. Corpus Christi will use its soon-to-be 147 square mile network to speed the process of inspections by its Construction and Permits Department, and will outfit police cars to have the capability to stream video to make better decisions on incident response.

Taipei, Taiwan plans to use its wireless infrastructure to aid in education and paperless administration of city services. The network will also be used to monitor traffic conditions across the municipality.

"Being an Intel Digital Community allows us to think broadly about technology and the transformation it can make for government and individuals," George Noe, city manager of Corpus Christi said.

"Wi-Fi is an amazing technology with multiple facets."

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