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Evolution of E-commerce: The possibilities of tomorrow

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The rapid growth of e-commerce is driving deep changes in logistics, from tightening up trucking capacity to elevating the importance of final-mile delivery processes. To respond, logistics managers now need to think in terms of systems that they can leverage today to make processes more efficient, while also keeping an eye on longer-term developments that will reshape tomorrow's possibilities. Several of thee include solutions currently in use, such as predictive analytics, supply chain control towers, and the continued digitization of freight forwarding; however, many, including blockchain-based traceability, driverless trucks, and even the advent of hyperloops, are all working through development, but promise to present bright new options in the future. The new take, says Joe Vernon, senior manager of North America supply chain analytics for consulting firm Capgemini, is predictive analytics that make use of machine learning and other related technology, including artificial intelligence (AI). "The goal is take all this data and be instructive with it, which is where machine learning comes in.


5 supply chain technologies that deliver competitive advantage MIT Sloan

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Facing globalization, increased product complexity, and heightened customer demands, companies are taking up advanced technologies to transform their supply chain from a pure operations hub into the epicenter of business innovation. Using sensors and ever-improving internet connectivity, forward-thinking companies are collecting data at every checkpoint, from the status of raw materials flow to the condition and location of finished goods. Machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), and advanced analytics help drive automation and deliver insights that promote efficiencies -- making on-the-fly route changes to accelerate product delivery, for example, or swapping out materials to take advantage of better pricing or availability. Additive manufacturing is also opening doors to easy production of spare parts, enabling companies to slash inventory, cut costs, and create supplementary revenue streams. These advanced technologies are serving as a springboard for new business models -- for example, many firms are piggybacking off the "internet of things" (IoT) to offer predictive maintenance services that guarantee product uptime while generating recurring revenue.


Amazon's Newest Ambition: Competing Directly With UPS, FedEx

WSJ.com: WSJD - Technology

Just before the morning rush hour on a recent Thursday, a brigade of vans rolled up to a low-slung warehouse near Los Angeles International Airport. Workers in bright green vests crammed some 150 Amazon.com This logistical dance wasn't performed by United Parcel Service Inc., UPS 1.15 % FedEx Corp. FDX 0.87 % or the U.S. Postal Service, all longtime carriers for the online-retail giant. It was part of an operation by Amazon.com Inc. AMZN 1.97 % itself, which is laying the groundwork for its own shipping business in a brazen challenge to America's freight titans.


The Future for Contactless Delivery

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The future for contactless product delivery is already here, and a pandemic seems to already be moving this trend forward. It just needs companies to implement and customers to accept the new delivery and tracking methods, along with other innovations, that will make this so. When this happens, we may one day look back and quietly thank the lowly coronavirus for catapulting us into a brighter future. One of the more iconic images from the early days of this disease comes from late March 2020, during San Francisco's citywide coronavirus lockdown, when "aspiring drone racing pilot" David Chen delivered a single roll of much-needed toilet paper to his friend Ian Chan in another part of the city. Chan captured the delivery on video and posted it to his Twitter feed, which ironically went viral.


IoT and Blockchain Applications in Logistics and Transportation

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Logistics/supply is currently one of the largest industries in the world. The constant demand for logistics in every sector and the increasing distribution and division of labor and goods across the world has turned logistics into an essential component of modern human life. This sprawling and interconnected system of businesses, trade routes, shipping manifests and legal red tape is made possible by a complex, multilayering of computer technology and old-fashioned paperwork. It's an industry that's often shrouded in unknowns and gaps, and sometimes even distrust, with transparency being at a premium for everyone involved. Few companies involved in the logistics and supply process are willing to share contract details, information about money or data on sales and supplies.