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Communications of the ACM

China Region Special Section: Big Trends

People Logistics in Smart Cities

circuit board cityscape

Credit: Tostphoto

Cities in China are growing rapidly in terms of both size and complexity. Governments have been searching for new technologies to make cities more efficient, and smart mobility has been the top priority in all solutions.

The past few years have seen a paradigm shift for smart mobility in China, that is, data-centric companies, mostly Internet companies, are taking a leading role in such initiatives instead of governments and academic researchers. For example, Alibaba, Baidu, Tencent, Ctrip, and Didi, among others, are spearheading the smart mobility initiatives. The driving force is twofold: these companies have accumulated a huge volume of data and invested a great deal of resources in the AI arena. Their main focus involves AI systems able to predict city traffic conditions with full spatiotemporal coverage and optimize transportation systems accordingly.


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