The Industry 4.0, also known as the fourth industrial revolution, brought about rapid changes in the mode of operation of the factory and on the way production of goods.

The integration of advanced technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and cloud computing are leading to the creation of smart factories that can adapt to the changing market conditions and customer demands, with the result that achieve improved efficiency, performance, and flexibility. This development, however, is a necessity or a luxury for the industry?

Throwback: The evolution of the 18the century to the present

The First Industrial Revolution (Industry 1.0), began in the late 18th century and was characterized by the use of steam for the operation of machinery in textile industries and other manufacturing facilities. At that time, it was the first notable increase of mass production of goods.

In the late 19th century, we have entered the period of the Second Industrial Revolution (Industry 2.0), which stood out the use of electricity and the assembly line for the operation of machines in the factories. This led to a further increase in productivity in mass production of goods in even greater scale.

The Industry 3.0 ( Third Industrial Revolution), began in the mid-20th century and was characterized by the use of computers and automation in construction through which they were developed programmable machines and robots, which in turn increased the accuracy in production processes.

The accuracy in the processes of production, was the fundamental difference between the third and the first two industrial revolutions. There is a development that is mainly due to the technology which has led us today to the Industry 4.0, where in addition to the increase of the production was the main goal of the first two industrial revolutions, it is observed that the smart factories with a focus on information and knowledge as data is stored everything in the cloud, with the ultimate goal of better decision-making, as well as the replacement of harmful, for people, jobs with robot-arms.

Increase productivity up to 30% with Internet of Things and artificial intelligence

One of the key drivers of Industry 4.0 is the IoT, which allows the connection of machines, devices and sensors to the internet, allowing them to communicate with each other and share data.

This allows tracking and real-time control of manufacturing processes, as well as the possibility of prediction and prevention of deficiencies of the equipment.

The use of IoT in construction can increase productivity up to 30%, according to a study by McKinsey. It also allows manufacturers to respond quickly to changes in demand, reducing the risk of overproduction and waste of resources.

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The artificial intelligence also plays an important role in the Industry 4.0, with the use of algorithms and machine learning for the analysis of data from devices, IoT and making predictions about future performance.

This allows the optimization of production processes and identify new business opportunities. For example, the robot with artificial intelligence can be used to perform repetitive tasks, freeing people – employees to focus on more complex and value-added tasks.

In addition, artificial intelligence can be used to improve the quality of the products, identifying and correcting defects in real-time.

The analysis of large volumes of data that are stored in the cloud, leads to better business decisions

Cloud computing is also an important aspect of Industry 4.0, as it allows for the storage and analysis of large amounts of data from devices, IoT and other sources. This allows manufacturers to make better decisions and improve their functions.

In addition, cloud computing gives manufacturers access to and the ability to use advanced analytical tools and apps, which can provide information on the production processes and to improve efficiency.

The Industry 4.0 has all the required infrastructure in order to radically change the whole supply chain management, improving traceability and visibility, enabling manufacturers to respond more quickly to any interruptions, and reduce the risk of running out of stock.

The technologies of Industry 4.0, such as 3D printing and advanced robotics, allow manufacturers to produce products with greater flexibility and adaptation, leading to better meet the needs of their customers.


Ensuring the data raises concerns about the Industry 4.0

Despite the benefits, the Industry 4.0 also raises concerns about the privacy and security of data, as well as the impact on jobs as well as increased automation and use of artificial intelligence.

Companies must ensure that their data is protected, and that they comply with the relevant regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe.

Companies will also need to consider how you will retrain their workforce to adapt to the new technological landscape.

However, the need for the Industry 4.0 is not limited only to remain the industries competitive, but it is a necessity for their survival in the industry.

The world economy is ever changing rapidly, and manufacturers must be able to adapt to changing market conditions and customer requirements.

The technologies of Industry 4.0 contribute to such developments, increasing efficiency, reducing cost, and improving the quality of the products.

The Industry 4.0 helps manufacturers to create new products and services, as well as the development of new business models.


Industry 4.0: Evolution and necessity at the same time

To sum up, the Industry 4.0 is not only a trend but also a necessity for manufacturers to remain competitive and to survive in the global market, while offering even greater safety in the workforce.

The infrastructure of the cloud has been around for many, many years in contrast to the automated processes, the digital controls and the use of robot-arm which there is an explosion of growth.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution has just begun.