Foxconn planning statewide ‘smart city’ competition

Initiative in partnership with higher education

Posted by Arthur Thomas from BizTimes on May 9, 2018

Foxconn Technology Group on Thursday will announce plans for a competition aimed at encouraging research into connected cities and systems as part of a partnership with a number of higher education institutions.

The “Smart Cities, Smart Future” initiative will be announced at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. The statewide competition is intended to “encourage discussion, research and recommendations on innovative new ideas for smart connected cities and systems to better serve Wisconsin,” according to a company announcement of the event.

Representatives of organizations involved declined to provide additional details.

The program will include remarks from UW-Parkside chancellor Debbie Ford, Gateway Technical College president Bryan Albrecht, Marquette University president Michael Lovell and Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. chief executive officer Mark Hogan. Foxconn will be represented by Alan Yeung, director of U.S. strategic initiatives.

In announcing plans for a $10 billion LCD manufacturing campus in Mount Pleasant, Foxconn officials have discussed their desire to build an 8K+5G ecosystem that builds on the next generation in screen and cellular data technology. The company says there are applications for the technology in a number of areas beyond entertainment including medicine, security and automobiles.

Local officials have also said the company pushed for the inclusion of lanes dedicated to autonomous vehicles in the expansion of Interstate 94 in Racine County and on local roads surrounding the planned campus.

Smart cities generally apply Internet of Things technology to common challenges. IEEE, a professional organization “dedicated to advancing technology for the befit of humanity,” says smart city technology can include intelligent lighting, smart building controls, facial recognition, transportation sensors and self-aware environments.

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