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Asia Pacific public sector: Growing appetites for disruptive innovations

Zafar Anjum | March 10, 2015
In this exclusive interview, Gerald Wang, Research Manager, IDC Government Insights, Asia/Pacific, discusses the ICT trends in Asia Pacific public sector in the light of the recently released IDC Government Insights’ report, “Pivot Table: Asia/Pacific (Excluding Japan) Public Sector IT Spending 2013–2018

Interestingly, these countries (Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand) are looking to build sustainable domestic ICT industries. As governments are the largest spenders of IT, we can expect that public sectors will play a large role in defining and shaping their domestic ICT landscapes.

In 2015, these economies are transitioning into more matured ICT mindsets as reflected in their increased IT services spend that has surpassed hardware spend; that is, they are becoming more confident in their ICT landscape and manpower maturity for higher level ICT program management and thereby, outsourcing more ICT contracts, especially non-mission critical ICT systems and e-services.

What does the report say about public sector spending and the vision for smart cities?

Smart Nation

Asia/Pacific city governments will kick-start pervasive adoption of IoT Technologies in 15%-20% of Smart City Initiatives. Asia/Pacific city governments are expected to bring about the first wave of IoT adoptions with initiatives aimed at improving city management operations and eservices deliveries. Notably, fund raising and investments in IoT will become much clearer in 2015 as prices of sensors continue to fall and the value-add services from suppliers continue to grow. As increasingly more pilots and implementations that connect new things to the Internet - from flood and air quality sensors to connected garbage bins and public transportation - gain visible success and measurable benefits, more cities will be confident with deploying IoT solutions to solve real city operational challenges that deliver noticeable benefits. IDC Government Insights believes potential IoT projects will kick off pervasively with the following use cases:

-          Remote surveillance and intelligent city monitoring solutions: Public safety and transportation agencies are expected to deploy more sophisticated cameras, sensors, human and vehicle tracking devices, wearables, and drones. Government functions with civil responsibilities (e.g., environmental agencies, land and transport agencies) will most possibly install a wide range of task-oriented, Internet-based, edge-intelligent solutions that depend on remote and automated access and monitoring. These include remote weather monitoring stations, intelligent cameras and sensors to detect roads and pavement surface conditions, pedestrian and traffic monitoring and real-time reporting, parking sensors and vehicle tracking solutions, environmental detectors for parks and urban gardens, smart utilities meters and pressure sensors, and intelligent diagnostic devices, among others.

-          Massive smart devices deployments for operations: Critical projects with clearly stated goals and productivity enablers. Examples include intelligent peak hour traffic monitoring and divergence solutions to ease traffic congestions and stresses to public commute, enhancing faster deployment and productivity of operations officers or staff, and automating repetitive tasks and reducing costly manpower expenses.

-          Innovative self-funding, shared funding, or the transfer of funding responsibilities to participating suppliers. Revenue-sharing models for city services related to automated fee collection (e.g., smart parking solutions) will make low-cost and no-cost implementation projects that necessitate heavy upfront investments from IT suppliers (rather than from city governments) - a popular alternative to traditional funding methods. IDC Government Insights believes that by 2020, cloud technologies will be the norm. This means that many cities will outsource city operations via the cloud to awarded vendors that are responsible for the installation and maintenance of devices, provide alerts to operations centers of municipalities for action as needed, integrate dashboards for monitoring and visualization, and provide analytics services on the data collected.


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