Telecom Italia and Telefónica have signed a technological agreement to initiate two trial projects that will offer new services to citizens and government and will draw upon new models participated by users to share and aggregate data relating to individuals and objects connected in a "Smart City" context. The use of the data will be under the full control of individuals and organizations that generate them and take place in full respect of privacy and regulations.
Telecom Italia will be working with Telefónica Digital, Telefónica’s research and development arm, at the Italian ICT technology centre and the Italian unit of the European Institute of Technology (EIT) led by Trento RISE, of which Telecom Italia is a premier industrial partner.
An integral part of a strategic alliance initiated in 2007, this agreement will enable both companies to strengthen their leadership in the development of applications for handling personalised information and advanced services in smart environments, including field testing.
The project leverages on the “Trentino Open Living Data” platform that Telecom Italia and other partners of the technology centre in Trento are implementing to process, collect and analyse data from multiple sources, including industry and public-sector bodies. As part of the project, Telefónica will be running tests on proprietary dedicated technology for metadata and metadata analysis.
The second part of the project envisages a collaboration between Telecom Italia’s SKIL laboratory, the Human Dynamics Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Institute for Data Driven Design (ID3), the Fondazione Bruno Kessler (FBK) and the Telecom Italia Future Centre. The scope of the project is to develop a “Mobile Territorial Laboratory” and to provide a field environment in Trento that will help to gather, organize and make the most of data produced by people as they interact with one another, with online services and with a smart environment via their mobile devices, applying rules established by users themselves. Telefónica contributes to the project by sharing competencies developed in similar ventures on Spanish soil.
Carlos Domingo, Head of Telefónica Digital’s Product Development and Innovation Department, says: “Participating in a research consortium like Trento via our partnership with Telecom Italia will be instrumental in developing best–of-breed BigData products in Smart City space. We will be able to test our leading technology in data analysis in a real environment with real users and in different scenarios, identifying technological areas to focus on. That technology transfer from research to commercial arena will guarantee the quality of the BigData products that our customers will obtain.”
Oscar Cicchetti, Head of Strategy at Telecom Italia, says: “The initiative in Trento, which we are running in partnership with Telefónica, sees Telecom Italia promoting a ‘Living Lab’ to understand the dynamics of the new ecosystems associated with personal data. We are adopting an open, shared approach towards users and government, working together as we seek to identify the opportunities and risks, and how to strike the right balance between protection and making use of information. The key to achieving these objectives is to prepare open infrastructure and develop a ‘real user community’. Together, we will be running trials on personal and group dynamics by analysing data and implementing a privacy-led and user-centric approach as we investigate people’s everyday habits and social interactions.”
Rome, 31 October 2012