With mobile phone traffic expected to grow nine times over by the year 2022, mobile operators are struggling to keep up with the levels of broadband coverage required. Unto the breach steps a new smart lightpole, which offers network coverage, acting in concert to increase a city’s overall 4G network coverage.
The new SmartPole from Philips is very similar in style to the traditional street light shape that is seen across Europe, however, the fixtures feature integrated antennas , as well as Ericsson’s small cell outdoor radios, enabling them to provide internet coverage.
Mobile network operators are currently struggling to acquire new cell sites in public areas to provide the best possible mobile broadband coverage and capacity for their customers. By renting space in the smart poles, they are able to densify their networks so that citizens can enjoy both safely lit streets and better smartphone data capacity.
Los Angeles will be the first city in the world to deploy 100 Philips SmartPoles, this previously untapped real estate, will create better broadband connectivit in the city, whilst enabling infrastructure for the future, creating jobs, saving tax payer dollars, and improving the environment in the process.
Different types of luminaires can be placed at different positions and heights on the pole in order to maintain a consistent illumination pattern on the streets. This also means it can be added to complement existing lightpoles without having to renew the whole area.
The digital transformation of public spaces is accelerating rapidly, from historic town centers to neighborhoods to large urban areas.
The lighting can also be controlled remotely using the cloud-based Philips CityTouch street lighting management system, which helps drive further energy efficiencies.
‘The digital transformation of public spaces is accelerating rapidly, from historic town centers to neighborhoods to large urban areas. Today’s civic leaders want to meet the needs of the people they serve by creating connected, protected environments that are smart and efficient today, and that take advantage of all emerging technologies in the future,’ said Christoph Herzig, head of venture at Philips Lighting.
‘Street lighting has the potential to become a ubiquitous, high-performing wireless network that is essential for any city’s digital transformation. Think of it as digital real estate that can be rented out.’ Herzig concluded.
In addition to broadband network services, the light poles can accommodate other equipment for a wide range of Internet of Things (IoT) applications. This allows cities and network providers to provide smart, advanced capabilities that go beyond illumination, including sensors.