IDC recently released a report, "IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Manufacturing Predictions 2018," surveying the global manufacturing landscape. When creating its predictions the firm examined ecosystems and experiences, greater intelligence in operational assets and processes, data capitalization, the convergence of information technology (IT) and operations. Most of the group's predictions refer to a continuum of change and digital transformation (DX) within the wider ecosystem of the manufacturing industry and global economy.
In November, in a dive into what is driving enterprise interest in the Internet of Things (IoT) we found that, for the moment at least, enterprises are still wrestling with the problems the IoT poses rather than harvesting the benefits that it offers. There is nothing unusual in this given that the IoT is still a relatively new phenomena and there are considerable -- and justified -- security fears dominating enterprise strategies around the IoT.
Technologies such as 5G, IoT sensors and platforms, edge computing, AI and analytics, robotics, blockchain, additive manufacturing and virtual/augmented reality are coalescing into a fertile environment for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), which is set to usher in what's often described as the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0. Here's how analyst firm IoT Analytics sees the relationship between the broader IoT and the IIoT/Industry 4.0 sector: This ebook, based on the latest ZDNet / TechRepublic special feature, explores how infrastructure around the world is being linked together via sensors, machine learning and analytics. In this brave new world, supply chains will have end-to-end transparency thanks to sensors, data networks and analytics capabilities at key points. All other things (trade barriers, for example) being equal, parts and raw materials will arrive just in time at highly automated factories, and the fate of the resulting products will be tracked throughout their lifetimes to eventual recycling. Similarly, 'smart farms' will combine emerging IIoT-related technologies into integrated high-resolution crop production systems based on robotics, big data and analytics.
The Internet of Things is an essential driver for customer-facing innovation, data-driven optimization and automation, digital transformation and entirely new applications, business models and revenue streams across all sectors. The Internet of Things is the logical next step in the evolution of the Internet. The roots of the Internet of Things go back to several existing technologies including machine-to-machine communication (M2M), RFID and sensors. The Internet of Things converges industries and specializations, uniting Information Technology and Operational Technology (IT and OT) and contributing to industrial transformation (Industry 4.0) and a wave of use cases which are either cross-industry or typical to a specific sector. As of June 2017 the main areas of Internet of Things investments (industries and use cases) include manufacturing operations, transportation, smart grid technologies, smart buildings and, increasingly, consumer Internet of Things and smart home automation.
SAN FRANCISCO – November 15, 2016 – Today at Minds Machines, GE (NYSE: GE) announced new products, acquisitions and partner programs to enable further adoption of Predix, the operating system for the Industrial Internet. The platform enhancements, acquisitions and new ISV partner program further complement the Predix technology stack and make it easier for industrial companies to execute a strategic digital transformation to drive internal productivity. In 2016, orders from GE's portfolio of software solutions are on track to climb 25% to more than $7 billion – making GE the fastest growing digital industrial company in the world. Demonstrating the strength of Predix within GE, digital thread productivity will exceed $600 million, accelerating into 2017. "The opportunity for industry is now," said Bill Ruh, Chief Digital Officer of GE and CEO, GE Digital.