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Jeddah aims to be a model smart city

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Zain KSA and Nokia have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate on a major initiative that will transform Jeddah, one of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s (KSA) largest cities, into a model for smart cities in the country and worldwide by 2018.
Under the MoU, Nokia and Zain KSA will apply advanced networking technologies in the Internet of Things (IoT) and the cloud to connect and manage a wide array of devices, vehicles, homes and applications. Use of these technologies will improve municipal services, enhance the business climate in Jeddah and create a better quality of life for the city’s almost 3-million residents.
Zain and Nokia will also employ advanced network and customer experience management tools to ensure smooth and seamless operation across the objects and locations. To ensure privacy and fulfill public safety requirements, the companies will place a strong focus on the reliability and security of the network.
Over the course of this two-year plan, the companies will enhance the network capacity, accessibility and efficiency of Zain KSA’s mobile broadband network in Jeddah, eventually leading to 5G access, while also expanding the utilization of small cells and WiFi to ensure continuous connectivity throughout the city.
Sultan AlDeghaither, chief technology officer for the project, says: “Jeddah is the second biggest city in Saudi Arabia – and thanks to our collaboration with Nokia, it will also be a smart city. Introducing IoT to all walks of life is a top priority for Zain KSA, and Nokia’s Smart City solutions will provide us with a framework for enriching the lives of the people in Jeddah.”
Ali Aljitawi, head of Zain KSA customer team at Nokia, adds: “The world is becoming more urbanised, with exponentially more connected devices. For every device connected to the Internet today, 10 more will join it in the near future. Through IoT and smart city concepts, we can automate our lives by connecting mobile devices to appliances, lights, roadways and just about everything – a shift that will improve efficiency and enable economic, social and environmental sustainability.
“We believe that the Jeddah Smart City concept can be a model for smart cities not just in the Kingdom, but across the region and the world.”