The Internet of Things (IoT) and smart manufacturing hold a significant amount of power when it comes to influencing how the manufacturing industry develops in the coming years. It could even be argued that these two powerhouses hold the key to the next industrial revolution, with Industry 4.0 predominantly being driven by both IoT and smart manufacturing.
In this article, we will take a deeper look into how smart manufacturing and IoT could well be driving the next industrial revolution across the globe, the challenges faced by the technology.
Rapid Growth in IoT and Smart Manufacturing
Industry research carried out by Grand View Research suggests that IoT and smart manufacturing will drive growth in the manufacturing sector over the coming years. The research shows that the manufacturing sector will triple in size between now and 2025, with IoT and smart manufacturing investment expected to reach over $395 billion.
Compare this with the $172 billion spent on IoT and smart manufacturing in 2016 and you can begin to see that there is a genuine belief from manufacturing firms around the world that IoT and smart manufacturing will revolutionise the way in which the sector operates for the better.
The globe’s largest manufacturing countries have already been seen to back IoT and smart manufacturing initiatives, with the likes of the US, Europe and China all heavily investing in their respective manufacturing processes.
How IoT Technology Can Succeed
IoT technologies have already been successfully used to improve the return on investment and productivity in businesses throughout the UK. This is mainly down to IoT’s focus on streamlining processes and ensuring any inefficiencies are identified and rectified.
It’s fair to say that collaboration between system integrators and trusted manufacturing automation businesses holds the key to how successful IoT technologies can be in the future. The specific requirements of your IoT technology will be completely dependent on your particular business, so steps must be taken to help smaller businesses tailor an IoT package which is suitable for their needs. The type of service provided will very much depend on the existing IT systems in place within a business, as IoT can be connected via a wide variety of technologies, such as WiFi and range radio, as well as LPWAN technologies.
Cyber Security Fears for IoT and Smart Manufacturing
The biggest issue IoT and smart manufacturing currently face is cyber-attacks. With internet security being a huge issue across the world, but predominantly in the UK, IoT must face cybersecurity issues head on and address them as soon as possible. The vast majority of manufacturing businesses are long standing companies, who were founded well before the internet revolution. This obviously means that many traditional facilities used by manufacturing companies were not developed to withstand any form of cyber-attacks.
With little-to-no security against hackers, cyber-attacks on manufacturing firms are common within the manufacturing industry, with some businesses having significant sums of money taken and others having substantial operational downtime.
If IoT technologies are to succeed in manufacturing firms around the world, more must be done to ensure robust protection is installed into facilities prior to the technology being implemented. This is especially prevalent when businesses begin migrating existing data to IoT technologies, as serious security risks are presented during this stage. Without genuine measures to protect information from hackers, IoT technologies could well present more issues than they solve at present.
Here at European Springs & Pressings, we know just how important industry 4.0 is to the future of manufacturing, that’s why we place such emphasis on ensuring that we invest in the latest technology to enhance our existing processes. As expert spring manufacturers, our goal is to ensure we continually improve our service offering to guarantee our customers receive the best bespoke pressings and bespoke stampings available on the market today.