Cisco, ELCIA join hands to develop ‘IoT Innovation Hub’ in Bangalore


Global networking major, Cisco has now aligned itself in a strategic engagement with Electronics City Industries Association (ELCIA) to develop Asia’s first end-to-end ‘Internet of Things (IoT) Innovation Hub’ in Bangalore.

Riding on India’s fast growing Internet penetration, this collaboration will help establish the foundation for a new ecosystem to help Electronic System Design & Manufacturing (ESDM) companies and other companies of electronic city engaged in IoT product development. ELCIA has been chosen for this ambitious project as it is the only brown field ESDM cluster in the country, which has received an in principal approval for a financial grant from the Government of India to spur innovation in product design and manufacturing.

According to a Task Force report commissioned by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY), the demand for electronics hardware in the country is projected to increase to USD 400 billion by 2020 and this initiative will help address domestic demand, allowing local manufacturers to capture this growing market opportunity and save precious foreign exchange for India.

As part of this effort, Cisco will help provide the network infrastructure and expertise for testing and production of electronic product prototypes for an IoT enabled smart city environment. Through the ‘Living Lab’, ESDM start-ups and other electronic city companies can build solutions for City Infrastructure Management (CIM) including Smart Parking, Smart CCTV Surveillance, Smart Street Lighting, Smart Water Management/Leak Detection and Community Messaging.

The project will utilize the Cisco Smart+Connected City WiFi solution that will help enable community WiFi services and allow access to public utility offerings. ELCIA will also embed Cisco network equipment comprising of access points, routers, switches, and other required hardware and software applications that will be connected to the smart city’s fibre-optic backbone network.

The first phase of this smart city project will be rolled out in Electronics City and will serve as a replicable model for the rest of Bangalore as well as other cities in India, across the region and other emerging markets. Participating companies would gain access to boot strap funding for their ventures under Cisco’s IoT Innovation Fund, provided there is a strong idea for new IoT product / application development with a commercially viable business case, as well as a chance to participate in the global Cisco IoT Challenge.

This project is being undertaken as part of the Cisco Smart+Connected Communities concept that places technology at the heart of economic development and better quality of life in modern cities. The focus is on using the network to deploy digitally enabled transportation, healthcare, education, utilities, energy grid and real estate in cities.

On this occasion, Anil Menon – President, Smart+Connected Communities and Deputy Chief Globalisation Officer said, “India has always been at the core of our emerging market strategy, and we see this arrangement as a tremendous opportunity for us to demonstrate our global expertise in IoT enabled technology. According to our IoE value index, the potential value at stake in India is $34.8 billion, and this initiative underscores our commitment to build an effective ecosystem to enable Indian startups help realize this potential to the fullest, in turn creating employment opportunities and contributing to economic growth through innovation.”

Commenting on the project, Kiron Shah, Chairman Electronic City Industrial Township Authority (ELCITA) said, “ELCIA together with ESDM and other electronic city companies have an opportunity to utilize the support of the Cisco Smart+Connected Communities team and collaborate with them during the sensor devices / applications development, testing, prototype manufacturing and field deployment phases by using the IoT Innovation Hub and Living Lab that will be set up in partnership with Cisco Systems”.

Expanding on the scope of this collaboration, Aruna Newton, President of ELCIA said, “This partnering with Cisco Systems will provide an opportunity for ELCIA along with ESDM and other electronic city companies to innovate and develop products and software applications that could be deployed in real world Smart City projects across India and emerging countries that could help optimize city infrastructure management functions. This project will also help ELCIA contribute towards the national objective to place India as a prominent member on the global electronic manufacturing and ESDM map.”