LED light maker See.Sense has won the £15,000 first prize in a BT and Cabinet Office competition. The Northern Ireland company was crowned the overall winner of the BT Infinity Lab SME Awards 2016: Connected Cities, run in partnership with the Cabinet Office, MK:Smart and TechHub.
The company won for its ICON intelligent and connected cycle light, which was judged to have the greatest potential to make a difference to the cities of the future. ICON contains sensors which collect data about any crashes, near miss-events, road surfaces, light levels and more. This information can then be used by city planners to create better cycling infrastructure and smart cities.
Possible uses for the data include identifying ‘hot spot’ areas where there are a high-frequency of ‘near-miss’ events and crashes, showing where the priority areas are to invest in cycling infrastructure, and identifying potholes before they’re fully formed, so that cities can repair them at lower cost before they become hazards.
See.Sense will now have the opportunity to work with MK:Smart, in one of the country’s most advanced Smart Cities, to turn their dream into a reality.
Irene McAleese, co-founder and chief marketing officer, See.Sense, said: “We’re honoured to have won the Smart City prize and also be judged the overall winner given the high standard of entries we were up against. We’ve gained some valuable insights from the other companies who have taken part and the feedback we’ve had during the competition.
“Having the opportunity to develop our idea into something that will really help transform cities of the future and make a real impact on society is really exciting. Working with Milton Keynes will also be a fantastic case study to showcase our capabilities.”
Matt Hancock, Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, said: "Being a smarter government is about recasting the relationship between the citizen and the state, making public services simpler, clearer and faster and taking advantage of state-of-the-art digital technologies.
"To achieve this, we need to draw on the expertise of digital innovators from all over the country, especially small businesses which we know to be some of the most innovative in the UK.
Geoff Snelson, Director of Strategy at Milton Keynes Council, added: “It’s been great to be part of the judging panel and hear all the exciting ideas from the competing SMEs. [See.Sense] is a very worthy winner[and I’m looking forward to working with them to bring their ideas to life in Milton Keynes”.