Current discussion about Industry 4.0 revolves around three separate areas – Governments promoting manufacturing; suppliers promoting the concept because it provides a good sense of differentiation; and end users.
Speaking during a recent Frost & Sullivan hosted webinar, which focused on the Internet of Things (IoT) in the age of Industry 4.0, Karthik Sundaram, Frost & Sullivan industrial automation & Process control industry analyst, referred to research which found that a great deal of end users are still not clear about many of the areas that make up Industry 4.0.
He said: “For many end users, Industry 4.0 is, essentially, an extension of existing lean management principles. Many end users are enthused by the technology but are not adequately clear about what it entails and what it promises. Frost & Sullivan believes that there is a lack of clarity surrounding the areas of value and return on investment. There is also a great deal of concern among end users about the lack of standardisation and this is one of the reasons for the last of enthusiasm to move towards Industry 4.0.”
According to Frost & Sullivan it is the responsibility of suppliers to help end users to upgrade plant from control systems that can be decades old and to protect plants and infrastructures from cyber threats.
Frost & Sullivan looks at Industry 4.0 as being a combination of technology, business collaboration and process innovation that includes the IoT, Internet of Services, Big Data and Integrated Industries. Read more