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INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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HDB to roll out one-stop app for residents

Starhub will develop the new app where residents can look for amenities and events near their vicinity.

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) revealed that it has inked deal to collaborate with various organizations to roll out a new AI and data platform as well as develop apps that could be useful for its residents.

Under a Memorandum and Understanding (MOU) HDB will work with tech startup Sentient.io, Starhub, IBM, and the Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) for the development of Pulse of Heartlands which eyes to develop apps and services geared to benefit residents. It will leverage on Sentient.io’s AI and data platform to compile information on HDB towns including shops in the neighbourhood, and AI capabilities such as a voice-enabled chatbot that could be integrated in future web and mobile applications which residents can utilise.

“Through data collected on Sentient AI and Data Platform, such as residents’ interests and frequently asked questions about their neighbourhood, agencies can glean insights to help them better plan and manage community facilities in future,” HDB explained.

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Data collected could give HDB planners an insight about resident’s frequently searched amenities, which could include in-demand shops, which could later on aid in planning guidelines for commercial shops in HDB areas, the agency noted.

Meanwhile, StarHub will be in charge of a new mobile app that will be positioned as a one-stop digital directory for residents to look for services, amenities and events in their neighbourhood. The app will also include a chatbot that can offer information and recommendations on where to shop or what to eat as well as a notification alert where residents can subscribe to stay informed about events near their homes.

According to HDB, a beta version of the said app can be freely downloaded by Q1 2019. Other features will be on boarded progressively from thereon, the agency added.

Over time, the platform will be added with more datasets as other public agencies and private companies come on board to offer more types of data, such as location and availability of transport and car park facilities.

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“App developers can tap on the data amalgamated on this platform to build more apps, thus growing it into an ecosystem of apps and services that will benefit residents in HDB estates,” HDB noted.

The Pulse of the Heartlands initiative is part of the Smart HDB Town Framework which maps out how HDB gears to create livable, efficient, sustainable and safe towns for residents.

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