Industrial Internet of Things, Industry 4.0, Digital Factory, and so on, are buzz words that every marketing executive likes to use. But their extensive adoption today has made them into applicable technologies, allowing manufacturers to achieve the universal goal of higher productivity.
Robots are no longer giant, mechanic beasts that are reserved for heavy-lifting and seemingly repetitive tasks. Now, they are changing, becoming more collaborative, mobile and intelligent. While they are changing due to technological breakthroughs, they are establishing a new place in the industry for themselves.
Within a true Digital Factory, manufacturers have access to a variety of data sources, usually in real-time, spanning from commercial operations to the supply-demand chain. Accessibility to this data is vital for a factory to achieve goals of productivity and efficiency associated with Internet of Things implementations.
The idea of Industry 5.0 may be premature to many since we haven’t even seen Industry 4.0 implementations in their true sense. Nevertheless, it's closer than one might think.
As a setpoint, Industry 4.0 is defined as the use of technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, Big Data, connectivity, and so on to bring intelligence and automation to manufacturing. This might be the extent of what might think future industrial systems may look like. However, there’s always room for improvement.
There is a lot of buzz in the industrial world today claiming that we’ve entered into a new era of industrial revolution, the fourth to be exact. The primary motivators behind these discussions has been the increased involvement of internet within the industry, but before we can truly declare a paradigm shift, we must understand each individual revolution.