Swisscom advances 'smart city' concept with mobile phone-based traffic management system

Swisscom pledged to cut traffic congestion in a suburb of the city of Lausanne by taking a new approach to modelling traffic flow that utilises mobile phone data.

The Swiss incumbent said it is aggregating anonymous mobile phone data in the suburban town of Pully to develop a system for managing traffic flows. Swisscom explained that four main arterial roads run through Pully, which results in high volumes of traffic and congestion in the town.

Robert Gebel, head of business development at Swisscom Enterprise Customers, said the company's new approach to modelling traffic flow offers benefits compared to "current models such as the microcensus."

Swisscom's approach "makes it possible to obtain much more precise data," and is able to "depict traffic streams in their entirety."

Gil Reichen, the Mayor of Pully, said the town aims to ease traffic congestion and, in turn, make it easier for travellers to access the town centre. He said the town will utilise Swisscom's mobile data system "to get a realistic picture of the traffic volumes and the length of time that traffic spends in the town centre."

Data from that overview will enable the town's leaders to implement "planning measures that really meet the needs of the residents of Pully," Reichen explained.

The Swiss operator said it will improve its mobile data-based traffic management service by working with universities to develop additional simulation models that will, in future, allow for the provision of traffic forecasts. Such predictions will enable Pully officials to plan for major forthcoming events, it noted.

Swisscom said the traffic management service is another step in its 'smart cities' concept, which aims to help local authorities to utilise digital data to improve the way they manage public services and utilities.

In a statement, the operator explained that such approaches can enable towns and cities to "improve living space and become more sustainable" by leveraging the "opportunities offered by digitisation to network their infrastructure accordingly".

For more:
- see this Swisscom announcement

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