Stuck in traffic

The potential for digital sensors and big data to make our cities easier to navigate and more efficient, whether it’s for parking, lighting or, in the case of Sensing City, pretty much the whole of Christchurch, is immense. Cisco has been banging on about the possibilities of the internet of things for a few years now, and, as its latest campaign, Building Tomorrow Today, shows, it thinks technology will soon render traffic jams extinct. 

The traffic jam is shown as a museum exhibit and there will be a few more ‘last’ scenarios, with Adweek saying they will include “the last long checkout line and the last product recall”. 

Last year, Cisco and its agency Goodby Silverstein created a connected billboard that used to data to tailor a message to its audience. One of the major advantages of digital screens is the ability to tailor messages and regularly swap out creative. But this took customisation to another level by monitoring live traffic data and adjusting the length of messaging based on the traffic speed in the billboard’s immediate vicinity. The faster the driver was going, the less they had to read. 

“From a marketing perspective, it’s not just about telling our story, but doing it in a way that shows what we’re talking about,” Cisco’s CMO Blair Christie told Ad Age. “This is how the connected billboard idea came about; we’re showcasing what connecting the unconnected could mean and telling our story at the same time.”

By 2020 the number of things connected to the internet is expected to be around 40 billion and less than 20 percent of those will be smartphones, tablets or PCs.

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