Livable Smart Cities powered by Deutsche Telekom

Livable Smart Cities powered by Deutsche Telekom

Deutsche Telekom invites you to help make cities more livable for everyone. Read Overview...

Deutsche Telekom challenges innovators to be creative and invent digital services that make smart cities more livable for everyone.

By 2050, 66% of the world’s population is expected to live in urban areas. How will cities supply these populations with basic resources like safe food, clean water, and sufficient energy, while also ensuring overall economic, social and environmental sustainability?

The convergence of smart devices with big data and the internet of things offers an opportunity for cities to reimagine how they provide municipal services to growing populations. Sensors and smart city infrastructure can provide information about the local municipality, easy access to public transportation, intuitive navigation aids, and user-friendly tools for civic participation. Vast amounts of information on virtually any topic are now accessible, at any time, through personal devices.

How can digital technologies and sensor data make cities more livable for their citizens, especially those that are disadvantaged? Such users include those:

  • Who are newcomers to an area (unfamiliar with local terrain or not fluent in the local language)
  • Who have small children (navigating public transportation, learning about available services)
  • Who struggle with digital literacy (elderly, learning disabled)
  • Who are blind, deaf, or physically handicapped
  • Who are elderly -  as the population ages, more and more people will experience reduced mobility, diminished hearing, and loss of visual acuity. 

Possible services that could be addressed are as varied as:

  • Navigation services
    • That guide a user to his/her destination in the best way, taking into account current conditions, user handicaps, and public transportation options
    • That identifies nearest available parking spaces, both commercial and municipal
  • Accessibility to municipal information and services
    • By identifying and aggregating the correct sources of information
    • By providing instant translations into other languages or other formats (read aloud, infographic, etc.)
  • Services that enable people to live independently
    • By creating an AI-like interface to more intuitively connect people to digital services
    • By linking home sensors to municipal services for emergencies, utility disruptions, etc.

Proposed solutions should have supporting evidence and/or a strong rationale for their validity.  Approaches that can be demonstrated are of particular interest, but ideas are welcomed too.  A prize purse of $25,000USD will be shared among the top innovators.  Winners will travel to Germany to present their solutions at Deutsche Telekom’s annual Innovation Day forum in September 2018.  This exciting opportunity will introduce the winners to the broader technical community within Deutsche Telekom.  Additionally, winners may be invited to develop their solution with Deutsche Telekom’s engineering team.


What Can You Do Right Now?

  • Click “ACCEPT CHALLENGE” to sign up for the challenge and view the submission form.
  • Share this challenge on social media using the icons above. Show your friends, your family, or anyone you know who has a passion for discovery.
  • Start a conversation in our Forum to join the conversation, ask questions or connect with other innovators.
Updates 16

Congratulations to the Livable Smart Cities Challenge Winners!

Sept. 3, 2018, 9 a.m. PDT by Kyla Jeffrey

We are proud to announce the winners in the Livable Smart Cities Challenge!


FIRST PLACE: Monitoring of road surfaces to improve road safety


Road repair closures not only cost congestion for everyday commuters but can be extremely costly! Kevin Lee’s Team proposed remotely monitoring road surface quality and detecting potholes using their proprietary Internet-of-Things (IoT) sensor attached to existing vehicles delivering real-time data.


SECOND PLACE: Smart Cities Bus Plan AI Mobile App


Robin Rowe suggests a mobile app using AI and GPS to track bus locations regardless if they are urban or otherwise. This app would show precisely where a citizens bus is and when it’s expected to arrive. City managers and bus companies use the system to track where their buses are and for resource loading, adding or removing buses from routes based on how many people are waiting.


THIRD PLACE: Smart City AI Assistant for Citizens & Visitors


If you’ve ever moved to a new city, or live in a developing city - knowing where things are can be quite the Mess. Cliff Edwards says that a smart city assistant personalizable for every citizen and visitor is the solution! His submission says it would use any language, and be accessible through mobile devices & public kiosks.




WalkSide maps the presence and accessibility sidewalks and provides optimum routing for people with disabilities and pedestrians. 


Livable Smart Cities powered by Deutsche Telekom

We are excited to welcome the top three winners to Germany in September 2018 to the annual Innovation Day forum where they will meet the broader technical community!

Deutsche Telekom would also like to take this opportunity to thank the 350 innovators and 52 teams who accepted our challenge to make our cities smart! It was not an easy process for selecting these winners. Thank you all for giving your best solutions and making this project a huge success!

To our judges, Ole Schilling, Melanie Kubin-Hardewig, Henrik Faelsch, and Andreas Bentz; your support is not without great thanks! Your contribution to refining our innovator's submissions was no simple task. This project’s delightful outcome is due to your efforts!

8 Hours Remaining to Submit!

Aug. 13, 2018, 6:59 a.m. PDT by Joeana Lutha Mae Villo

If you're still assembling your submission, you have exactly 8 hours left to complete it!

Here's a Tip: HeroX recommends innovators plan to submit with at least a 3-hour window of time before the true deadline. Last-minute technical problems and unforeseen roadblocks have been the cause of many headaches. Don't let that be you!

Two Day Warning

Aug. 11, 2018, 1:59 p.m. PDT by Joeana Lutha Mae Villo
This is your official two-day reminder!

That's right, the Livable Smart Cities powered by Deutsche Telekom will be closing this coming August 13th at 4:59 pm Eastern Time (New York/USA).

Please be sure to complete your submission form well before the exact cut-off time.

At exactly 4:59 pm ET, we can no longer accept new submissions!

Got questions?

Now is the time to speak up! Comment directly on this update with any questions about the submission process and we'll get back to you right away!

McKinsey Report: Smart cities: Digital solutions for a more livable future

Aug. 10, 2018, 5 a.m. PDT by Kyla Jeffrey

Until recently, city leaders thought of smart technologies primarily as tools for becoming more efficient behind the scenes. Now technology is being injected more directly into the lives of residents. Smartphones have become the keys to the city, putting instant information about transit, traffic, health services, safety alerts, and community news into millions of hands... Continue Reading


Read the full report from McKinsey here. 

Five Days Left to Submit (TIPS)

Aug. 8, 2018, 1:59 p.m. PDT by Joeana Lutha Mae Villo

We are quickly approaching the final days open for submission to the Livable Smart Cities powered by Deutsche Telekom. The deadline is August 13th at 4:59 pm Eastern Time (New York/USA.)

Here are a couple of last-minute tips for a smooth entry process:

1. Begin your submission process several days before the cutoff time. This allows you to ensure everything you have been working on can be seamlessly integrated into the form.

2. Your submission will not be reviewed until you click the orange "Submit Entry" button at the top of the final review page. Please remember to do this!

3. Review the Challenge Guidelines to ensure your submission is complete. Pay particular attention to the judging criteria which will be the scorecard used to evaluate your entry.

4. Have any questions? Head over to the challenge forum and we would love to help you out.

Thanks so much, and good luck to all!

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