These days, a lot of discussions seem to be popping up about both blockchain technology and artificial intelligence (AI). However, the conversations often seem to be different, not acknowledging the fact that these two technologies will most likely be integrated in ways that we cannot even imagine right now. For those who are just hearing about AI and the blockchain right now, this can almost be overwhelming. But many are unaware that this unique combination is already powering the growth of smart cities right now.

Dubai is setting the benchmark

For those who have been following all of the tech developments in Dubai recently, it probably does not come as a surprise that this UAE powerhouse is setting a new standard for what people can expect from smart cities. Savvy decision makers in this city have embraced blockchain technology and are actively seeking ways to use it to make residents’ lives easier. For instance, some in Dubai are pushing to make the entire city paperless, using blockchain technology to power everything from starting a business to shipping goods. Once artificial intelligence is combined with the blockchain in Dubai, a great deal of money and man hours will be saved.

China making advances?

Although Chinese officials have not warmed to the idea of cryptocurrency, they are overwhelmingly enthusiastic about blockchain technology—so much so that many are predicting smart cities will crop up in China even faster than in other countries. In Yinchuan, for instance, traditional payment methods have been replaced by facial recognition technology! Residents are free of burdensome documentation and can pay their way simply by using their faces. Of course, not all nations are so up to date when it comes to incorporating this level of artificial intelligence.

A synergistic mix

With AI and blockchain both coming to the forefront of the world stage at around the same time, it seems like a fortuitous time to be in technology. Both technologies can drastically decrease the workload previously handled by humans. As a result, smart cities will become efficient and cost-effective. Bureaucratic red tape will become a thing of the past as we are ushered into a new and exciting age. Artificial intelligence and blockchain will combine to create convenience and ease in the lives of smart city residents.