Industry 4.0 is the techie label for what is shaping up to be the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Smart devices, smart machines, robots, the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) create the technological infrastructure for the newest approach to manufacturing. These technologies have reached a scale that allows them to deliver substantial value to the companies able to invest in them. In real-world factories, Industry 4.0 has lowered production costs, shortened production times, and reduced waste.

Overview Of Industry 4.0 Benefits

Cloud data storage helps companies manage logistical challenges by improving the speed and accuracy of tracking the movement of goods and supplies. Manufacturers of all sizes can also tame the complex demands of global supply chain management with AI that watches trends and anticipates shifts in demand. With AI, companies can order supplies or make goods in precise quantities to control costs and reduce cash flow problems.

Manufacturing equipment. Credit: Mixabest

Within the factories, humans interact with machines that increasingly do the bulk of the physical labor while constantly collecting operational data and measuring product quality. Smart machines have the ability to detect flaws and errors quickly and cut down on waste that results from bad batches. The faster production environment also makes it possible for manufacturers to run small batches of different products while maintaining profitability.

Apple Is An Industry 4.0 Leader

Foxconn, a manufacturer for Apple Inc., has a fully automated factory in Shenzen, China. This location is famous for being a “lights off” plant because the factory robots do not need light to perform their jobs. Although people still work there, the production floor itself is automated. Production efficiency has reportedly climbed by 30%. Another Foxconn plant in Chengdu has achieved a 200 percent increase in efficiency with AI and IoT technology.

Common Visualization of Artificial Neural Network with Chip. Credit: Liam Huang

Are you working in an environment with Industry 4.0 technology? Comment with your thoughts.


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