The Internet of Things (IoT) has not only introduced connected devices, it also is responsible for a revolution.
It’s called Industry 4.0, commonly referred to as the fourth industrial revolution and is fueled by IoT technology that produces automation and data exchange.
With the help of IoT technology, Industry 4.0 focuses on a more comprehensive, interlinked and holistic approach to manufacturing. It connects physical with digital, and allows for better collaboration and access across departments, partners, vendors, product and people.
Industry 4.0 empowers business owners to better control and understand every aspect of their operation, and allows them to leverage instant data to boost productivity, improve processes and drive growth.
IoT and Smart Manufacturing
Just as smart cities, smart cars and smart grids have developed, so has smart manufacturing due to IoT interconnectivity.
For example, Industry 4.0 emphasizes a concept known as “predictive maintenance/analytics.” This is all about predicting when potential problems are going to arise before they actually happen. Without IoT, preventative maintenance is an inefficient manual task. With IoT systems in place, preventive maintenance is much more automated and streamlined. Systems can sense when problems are arising or machinery needs to be fixed, and can empower you to solve potential issues before they become bigger problems.
Asset tracking and optimization via IoT influenced automation and robotics also helps manufacturers to become more efficient with assets at each stage of the supply chain. It allows manufacturers to keep better track on inventory, quality and optimization opportunities relating to logistics. Additionally, standard asset management tasks such as asset transfers, disposals, reclassifications, and adjustments can be streamlined and managed centrally and in real time.
Other benefits from IoT-infused Industry 4.0, include:
- Richer and more timely analytics
- Digitizing and making sense of information
- Improving customer satisfaction and customer experience
- Improving product quality or keeping product quality intact
- Boost efficiency and profitability across the entire organization
- Real-time insights that lead to better, faster decisions
- Providing all team members with up-to-date, relevant views of production and business processes
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