Councils are failing to utilise Machine-to-Machine (M2M) technologies, missing out on over £400m a year in potential savings, according to new research.
The report, published by Vodafone UK, found that two-thirds (67%) of urban councilors are not aware of M2M and how it can be incorporated into public services such as street lighting, transport management and monitoring systems.
The report argues that by using smart street lighting and smart in-building energy management systems could save local government £402.3m. It said that using just two M2M-based solutions would make up for 5% of the budget cuts facing local authorities.
‘While the importance of technology seems to be widely appreciated by local councillors and residents in urban areas, the lack of awareness of the massive benefits to be gained from M2M and the Internet of Things means that urban councils are missing out on opportunities to deliver better, smarter and more cost effective services in the areas which matter to their local communities,’ said Matt Key, director of M2M sales and commercial at Vodafone.
‘Among the small amount of councillors who are familiar with M2M, almost all of them (83%) feel the technology will be important in delivering better services and improved value to the community.’
According to the research, councils could save nearly £190m a year by introducing smart monitoring system across their buildings, and £214.8m a year by rolling out connected or smart street lighting.
The research also found 77% of the public would support their local council if it decided to invest in new technology to improve public services.