Dubai: A conference in Dubai this March will discuss how smart lighting solutions are coming to the UAE as the country aims to develop smart cities.

The conference is the first of its kind in the region, organisers said, and will focus on how the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) can drive smart lighting. It will be part of Middle East Electricity, a platform for the power industry.

The event will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre on March 5, and will bring together experts from the Middle East, South America, Europe, India and the United States to discuss ways to leverage IoT within the lighting sector and how that can change lifestyles.

Smart street lighting seems to be emerging as a key theme, with speaking predicting its impact on the Middle East and North Africa as focus shifts on the environmental impact and cost benefits of smarter lighting.

Experts say that smart street lights will also be able to collect data about urban traffic, pollution, weather conditions and people flow.

Looking further ahead, advanced IoT technologies could see pedestrians in the future generating power by walking on pressure-sensor footpaths, and even the launch of navigational headsets, which will allow those who are visually impaired to use sensors to hear their surroundings.