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Networking In Smart Cities

By  Salah M. Alajeel 

Technology plays an important role in smart cities. Where various technologies are involved, they need to share data to create unity of information. This communication between devices and people has to be supported by a good network system.

A good networking system is comprised of wired and wireless frameworks. The two frameworks, when combined, create an efficient system that complements each other.

Wired Network

Wired networks are the most popular networks. They generally comprise cables to send data between devices. It is important to have a wired framework in a smart city as a failsafe when wireless connections fail.

Advantages Of A Wired Network To A Smart City

  1. They experience fewer network traffic interruption attacks.
  2. They are less likely to experience outages and interference than their wireless counterparts.
  3. Users do not share bandwidth. They each have a dedicated bandwidth.

Wireless Network

Wireless networks comprise connections that are not supported by physical transmission media. Because of their lack of physical connections, they help save on the cost of buying cables on a large scale. They create an efficient connection that can be accessed by anyone with an internet-enabled device. This means that data reaches most of its intended audience.

Advantages Of Wireless Networks

  1. Devices are easier to move around with because they lack physical constraints.
  2. They are easier to install and update than wired networks.
  3. They are easier to expand.
  4. They can reach areas that would be hard for cable to be installed. This gives them a wider reach.

Data Centers

Data centers are buildings or institutions that host the computers and technology that supports the networks. They host storage for data and information and other network support technologies. Data gathered from the sensors all over the city is processed, stored, and, if need be, transmitted to any point where it is needed.

Uses Of Networks In Smart Cities

Resource Management

The availability of communication through networks gives experts an easy time monitoring a resource. For example, an engineer can monitor any faults in a powerline in real-time, in the comfort of their office. Drones and sensors communicating through a wireless network can send diagnostics data over long distances in a very short amount of time.

Crowdsensing

Networks in smart cities are an important tool in crowdsensing. In crowdsensing, many people share data and information to help them as they go about their day to day activities. This sharing would be impossible without the support of a good network system.

 Improving Quality Of Service

Networks in a smart city tremendously improve the quality of services that are offered. The communication between intelligent devices means that a driver, for example, will be directed through parts of the city with less traffic and obstructions and get the best parking space for his/her needs without the hustle of going through all his/her options physically. Variables like road repairs and constructions can be updated on the system and communicated to drivers in real-time. 

Disadvantages Of Networks In Smart Cities

  1. The initial installation of extensive networks over such a large geographical location is very expensive.
  2. Management of a large network requires professionals. Experts who can handle such sophisticated networks are hard to find and expensive to maintain.
  3. Crashing of servers can impede service delivery.
  4. The technology can be breached by hackers. 
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