IoT Smart City – What is Smart Building?


An Internet of Things (IoT) Smart Building (SB) is any structure using automated processes to automatically control the building’s operations including heating, ventilation, air conditioning, lighting, security and other systems.

A smart building uses sensors, actuators and microchips, in order to collect data and manage the different building operations based on specific business functions and services rules. The IoT is advancing a new breed of smart buildings that are better aligned with the priorities of property owners and managers.

Smart cities are commonly seen to be the future of the urban built environment, with increasingly populated conurbations, demanding more functionality from more constrained resources and more strict building regulations.

Smart Building is a subset or component of the IoT Smart City. SB helps owners, operators and facility managers improve asset reliability and performance, delivering more accurate and useful information, which reduces energy use, optimizes how space is used and minimizes the environmental impact of buildings.

Making a smart building begins by linking core systems such as lighting, power meters, water meters, pumps, heating, fire alarms and chiller plants with sensors and control systems. At a more advanced stage, even elevators, access systems and shading can become part of the system.




Linking Business Systems

The movement toward interoperable, connected devices and systems within a building requires cooperation between many different parties, many of whom are historical business competitors.

Despite the challenge, voluntary collaboration over the past two decades has led to the adoption of open standards such as BACnet®, Modbus®, and LonWorks®1, leveling the playing field by enabling every manufacturer and contractor to make their contribution to a functional whole.

The result is a building where lighting, air conditioning, security and other systems pass data freely back and forth – leading to higher efficiency, more safety and comfort, and lower cost operation of the facility.


Linking People and Technology

There is no room for difficult training and steep learning curves in modern day facility management with budgets tight and staff constrained. Instead, a truly smart building provides intuitive tools that are designed to improve and enhance the existing efforts of the people on the ground.

As the smart building evolves, the sharing of information between smart building systems and components will provide the platform for innovation. Future applications will appear as facility managers interact with tools and technology to do their jobs better – providing more comfort, more safety, and more security with less money, less energy, and less environmental impact.



The IoT SB market is rapidly growing and it has a high revenue potential. Smart office buildings, health care facilities, hospitals, educational facilities, stadiums and many other types of smart buildings exist around the world. Navigant Research estimates that the smart building technology market will generate global revenue of $8.5 billion in 2020, up from $4.7 billion in 2016, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 15.9% over the forecast period.



Smart Building will increase buildings operations efficiency, workforce effectiveness and high performance workplace optimization. Additionally, SB will reduce CO2, emissions, energy usage, water usage and space (optimal occupancy).



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