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COVID-19 pandemic may make contactless products a trend

新冠疫情或将推动公众倾向于支持和采用智慧城市技术。 Source: NUSW Newsroom

"Covid-19 has been the unforeseen push towards public adoption of Smart City technology with citizens being immersed in a hands-on experience."

Druing COVID-19 pandemic, people are more wary of interpersonal interaction when it comes to receiving deliveries or storing belongings at public area. There became a newfound demand for parcels to be contactless.

A contactless smart locker Yellowbox provides such help for its uners.

Yellowbox is a network of smart lockers which can be accessed on-demand using a mobile app. They are located over the city centre and the app features a live map which shows users lockers near them.

Vanessa Zhao, Co-founder & CEO of Yellowbox, told SBS Mandarin that these lockers are being turned into letterboxes during COVID-19 pandemic. Rather than only one person accessing the locker to drop off their bags for a few hours, the smart lockers allow people to give other people access to the locker which turns them into contactless delivery points.

Yellowbox smart locks utilise Bluetooth Low Energy technology for the phone to communicate to the smart lock. Vanessa says, the development of Bluetooth 5 has really propelled progress in the IoT space especially when it comes to Smart Buildings and Smart Homes. Specifically, Bluetooth 5 has allowed for smaller chips, more affordable hardware and low battery consumption all of which is crucial to the contactless product. Thus bluetooth has allowed smart products to be accessed with consumer’s phone essentially turning everyone’s phone into an efficient remote control to access the world around them.

Vanessa says COVID-19 has pushed Australia forward in the adoption of smart technology in the short term such as movement trackers and apps to ensure social distancing. Though Australia has developed smart city plans and taken actionable steps towards integrating IoT like smart-bins, smart-lighting, and sensor technology in the urban sustainability and mobility space, Covid-19 has been the unforeseen push towards public adoption of Smart City technology with citizens being immersed in a hands-on experience.


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