5 Reasons Why Industry 4.0 is a game changer

Without a doubt you would have already started noticing the digital and everyday physical world colliding and merging to give rise to a new future. This new fusion is changing manufacturing and eventually, the way we will interact with everyday products. According to industry experts, a new period of manufacturing tech called “Industry 4.0” will be upon us within the next 20 years. At its core, will be cyber-physical systems made up of processors, software, sensors and communication technologies. But are these changes revolutionary? John Donovan of Mouser Electronics writes in an ecnmag article:

“The vision of Industry 4.0 is for “cyber-physical production systems” in which sensor-laden “smart products” tell machines how they should be processed.  Processes would now govern themselves in a decentralized, modular system. Smart embedded devices start working together wirelessly either directly or via either the Internet ‘cloud’ – the Internet of Things (IoT) – to once again revolutionize production. Rigid, centralized factory control systems give way to decentralized intelligence as machine-to-machine communication hits the shop floor. This is the Industry 4.0 vision of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”.

The German Academy of Science and Technology agrees and originally coined the phraze “4th industrial revolution” or “Industry 4. 0”. Though the term is hardly used outside of Germany, many industrialized nations nevertheless recognize the logic of sharing the same goal of making production operations cheaper and as flexible as possible, with increasing innovation cycles.

To quote them: ‘The vision of Industry 4.0 facilitates “cyber-physical production systems” in which sensor-laden “smart products” tell machines how to go about being processed. Industry 4.0 by the way originally began as a German government initiative to kickstart the industrial sector, which is crucialto the German economy. By facilitating processes which now govern themselves in a decentralized, modular system, Smart embedded devices will start working together wirelessly either directly or via either the ‘cloud’ – the Internet of Things – to once again revolutionize production.

We will start to see rigid, centralized factory control systems give way to decentralized intelligence as machine-to-machine communication (M2M ) hits factory floors. This is the Industry 4.0 vision of the Fourth Industrial Revolution’. This concept or vision allows for many a game changer. Conventional “mechanical chains” in production are increasingly being transformed into “digital chains. ” Take the 3D printing. Have you ever wanted to produce your spare parts for devices at home?. Non manufacturers can disrupt established players and the very nature of the technology makes existing conventional production and logistic processes obsolete.

The rise of Smart devices are another key tech: By 2020, 50 billion devices will be connected to the web . A large percentage of these will undoubtedly be utilized in the area of  production processing. Integrated with sensors, products, tools, and machinery provides an opportunity for faster decision making and remote control. Plant managers will get real-time Business Intelligence from the factory floor and retain immediate control of production processes. The usage of smart items will enable more flexible and autonomous manufacturing units.

Given that previous revolutions transformed our society, we should expect no different from Industry 4.0. Listed below are 5 reasons why “Industry 4. 0” is pertinent and essential – and a revolutionary catalyst:

1. Data can alleviate current challenges for manufacturers.

2. It generates an innovation economy.

3. The consumer become the central focus

4. Workers become coordinators instead of manual laborers

5. A sustainable prosperity for business is on the cards.

Industry 4.0 has many of its building blocks already existing in the present. One of the most important technologies is the Internet which will only get faster and more connected in time. Industry 4.0 vision is already based in reality. We can expect its realisation shortly.

Image credit via siemens

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