October 2017

GITEX 2017: Smart Dubai Launches ‘Smart Decision-Making Platform’, Takes Visitors on Journey into the Future

Smart Dubai has long held synergistic and cooperative relationships with a diverse spectrum of Dubai Government bodies and private companies. These partnerships offered fertile ground for a great many innovations and achievements that will be on full display at Smart Dubai’s pavilion at GITEX Technology Week 2017.

As many as 50 public and private entities will be using the pavilion – themed “Future Live” – as a platform to showcase upwards of 200 innovative smart services that tap cutting-edge Fourth-Industrial-Revolution technologies – from Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT) to virtual and augmented reality – to make Dubai the happiest and smartest city in the world by the year 2021.

The exhibits reflected the six key objectives of the Smart Dubai Plan 2021, with each entity using one of six dedicated “zones” to showcase ground-breaking initiatives, systems, programmes and applications, that serve to accomplish their respective objective. The showcase demonstrated the correlation and intersectionality between government entities and the services they offer.

Smart Dubai’s innovative display, which serves to introduce and engage the public with Dubai’s smart transformation process, whet the appetite of several high-profile organisations to pledge their support for the project, sponsoring Smart Dubai’s GITEX 2017 participation, namely, Darkmatter joined as Diamond sponsor; while IBM, SAP, ATOS, d3 and DELL EMC came on board as Gold sponsors; and Network International and Exceed as Silver sponsors.

Commenting on his organisation’s full support for Smart Dubai as Diamond Sponsor, Faisal Al Bannai, Founder and CEO of DarkMatter, asserted: “Cyber-securing the digital environment is tantamount to protecting our way of life. Smart Dubai is a world-leader in its use of technology to protect and enhance the lives of residents and visitors alike, and we are proud to be offered this opportunity to showcase the fundamental role cybersecurity plays in smart-city transformation.”

On the same note, Samer Soliman, Managing Director – Group Acquiring at Network International, said: “Network International is delighted to be a strategic supporter of Smart Dubai, and our partnership during GITEX Technology Week will reflect our shared focus on creating innovative new products and solutions that ensure happy city experiences for UAE residents, entrepreneurs and visitors. Secure and convenient digital payment methods for government service are a large focus of the smart city initiative, championed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai.:

Similarly, Mohammad Saeed Al Shehhi, Chief Operating Officer at d3, noted: “We are pleased to participate at GITEX this year as a strategic partner to Smart Dubai. We are committed to achieving the 2021 Vision of making Dubai the happiest place on earth and leveraging design-thinking to make a difference for our future.”

Smart Living

Of the many exhibitors in Smart Dubai’s pavilion, which was meant to help the public visualise “Smart living”, some of the most notable participations included the General Directorate of Civil Defense at the UAE Ministry of the Interior, which launched its “Hasantak” service that seeks to secure buildings and towers. The programme examines fire alerts and determines false alarms, thus preventing the Directorate from wasting resources on false alarms or minor incidents. “Hasantak” connects residents with the operation room, where highly trained professionals provide clear instructions to help people remain safe during emergencies. It also connects the Civil Defense with other departments, including the police and ambulance services.

Meanwhile, the Dubai Municipality introduced “Smart Reaper”, which guides users when purchasing their sacrificial feast for Eid-al-Adha, in addition to the “Barakatna” app, which allows families to contact their elderly loved ones via video calls. Moreover, the Municipality exhibited applications based around the Internet of Things and Micro Strategy, in addition to an app to keep buildings across Dubai safe in the event of an earthquake.

Smart Environment

The Dubai Municipality had additional innovations on display that address environmental issues, namely, the Dubai Intelligent Environmental Monitoring System, which measures air and water quality using 13 air quality monitoring stations spread across Dubai. The stations divide the emirate into four zones to facilitate monitoring: The mainland, Downtown Dubai, Industrial City and the suburbs.

The Dubai Municipality’s Waste Management Department also targeted children, launching an educational game to raise their awareness about recycling, using virtual reality.

Smart Community

Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation (AMAF) used the Smart Dubai pavilion to introduce its intelligent services targeting Emirati minors, namely, the DUBAI AMAF application, which helps provide care for them and safeguard any property they have inherited until they reach the age of majority and are eligible to claim it.

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF), meanwhile, showcased the Dubai Smart Library initiative, which grants users access to the largest collection of Arabic and international digital content. The Foundation collaborated with the largest local and international publishing houses to provide the service, which spreads culture and disseminates knowledge among members of the community.

Furthermore, the IBM platform features advanced AI-powered services, including its flagship Rashid application, in addition to Blockchain-based and Smart-City applications.

Smart Mobility

As far as Mobility goes, Dubai Police introduced visitors the services available through its official website, which target organisations and individuals. The department’s smartphone app allows users to issue licenses, renewals and permissions without physically reporting to the police stations.

The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), meanwhile, exhibited a range of smart services, including the integrated mobility platform for Dubai (Suhail), the smart pedestrian crossing, the two-seater self-driving air taxi, the Dubai Drive application and the customer loyalty points system Nol Plus.

Elsewhere, Darkmatter showcased its cybersecurity technologies for the public and private sectors, as well as advanced security systems and strategies that protect governments, businesses and individuals from cyber threats.

Smart Governance

On the subject of Governance, the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority offered 26 smart services in addition to an advanced system allowing authorities to track and remotely control drones. The display allows drone owners to familiarise themselves with the system in order to ensure safety and security.

Taking part in the Governance platform, Silver Sponsor Exceed showcased its advanced data technologies, which facilitate the development of smart reports and data platforms that help organisations make informed decisions.

Smart Economy

The Department of Economic Development (DED) took advantage of its participation alongside Smart Dubai in GITEX 2017 to showcase its Instant License app, which allows users to issue a commercial license in one step without a Memorandum of Association or lease contract. The license is valid for one year and the abovementioned documents are required for renewal.

Meanwhile, the Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA) is introducing fairgoers to the Dubai Maritime Virtual Cluster (DMVC) initiative, consisting of smart and interactive platforms for knowledge-sharing and research to further grow the sector and increase its competitiveness.