BTC excited about partnering in GB becoming a ‘smart city’

Grand Bahama’s ability to become a smart city is very viable, and the country’s leading telecommunication company is excited to be a part of that plan.

In a recent interview with this daily, Andre Knowles, BTC’s Chief Compliance Officer (CCO), outlined the company’s plans to help the island accomplish that feat.

Knowles said that building a smart city is intended to promote adoptions of smart solutions for efficient use of available assets, resources and infrastructure.

“One of the key highlights of building and managing a smart city is about using digital technologies, information, communication and technology services (ICT) to improve a city’s infrastructure and services.

“There are two overarching benefits of building smart cities, which are sustainability and efficiency,” he said.

Knowles explained that creating a smart city is about embedding smart devices, like computerized sensors into the urban fabric that collects information in real time, send it for processing by intelligent analytics systems with the results being used to optimize key city services.

“These services include transport systems, energy supply and health care. In such an environment, a great variety of infrastructure, city equipment and home/building, and plugs will be connected to the network in what is referred to as the Internet of Things (IOT),” he added.

Knowles specified that connectivity and data transport services will underpin most of the smart city technology solutions.

“Smart city projects offer an opportunity for telecoms’ providers to play a role in beyond the traditional data pipes and add more value and BTC has already initiated beta projects in some of the Family Islands.

“Telecom providers have the infrastructure and a unique experience in monitoring and managing the performance, and complex networks. So this is an ideal position to supervise, monitor and manage the performance and quality of service and new smart city domains such as smart buildings. Also, beyond this, there is a real opportunity to leverage the cloud computing and big data analytics technologies to offer solutions.

“To effectively tap into this promising opportunity telecoms providers will have to transform its business models, networks and IT systems in order to act as true value-added solutions integrators across this complex ecosystem,” he said.

Knowles first introduced this topic at the 20th Bahamas Business Outlook in Grand Bahama last month – Thursday, February 22 – at the Grand Lucayan.

Several companies participated in the event, including Atlantic Medical.

Shanda Moss-Styles, Retention Monitor of Atlantic Medical also told this daily that they offer many products and services, “including group health insurance and individual health insurance … we try to fit whatever the customer’s needs are.”

Moss-Styles noted that The Bahamas Business Outlook was an opportunity for small businesses to come together and share their ideas, as well as be open to the ideas of others.

Ian Rolle, president of the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) also spoke on the importance of such an event, in the current economic climate.

“It is most important, especially based on the economic climate. Persons here today will be speaking to opportunities, persons here today will be speaking to ways to understand your business better and hopefully, persons who are attending this ceremony will also hear of new announcements from the government, a new announcement from the Port Authority in terms of a new initiative,” he said.

Rolle added that it is very encouraging to come to events like the Outlook to receive positive advice on how to make a business better.

Other companies that participated in the Outlook included – Bahamas Power and Light (BPL), Central Bank of the Bahamas, GBPA Invest Grand Bahama Small Business Bureau, Generali, Graham Thompson Attorney, Health City Cayman Islands and Scotiabank.

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