They’re watching you, wherever you walk. They know exactly where you pause, when you slow down and speed up, and they count you in and out of the city.
They’re also tracking your phone, so they can tell exactly how many people from your country or region are in which area, at which time. And they’re doing it in a bid to change tourism for the better.
Welcome to Venice in a post-Covid world. The canal city, once known as The Most Serene, has become rather less serene, thanks to the almost 30 million visitors who descend each year on the city of just 50,000 inhabitants.
Counting the daytrippers and tracking where they tend to visit, and which streets they take, could be crucial for a city which has resorted to closing its main thoroughfares to non-locals at busy times in an attempt to spread people throughout the city.
One of those behind the data project said, “In 2021, Venice celebrates its 1,600th anniversary, and we’ll be celebrating with technology.”