In its latest report, multinational consultancy firm Capgemini predicts that smart factories are set to become revolutionary within the manufacturing industry.
The report found that smart factories could add anywhere between $500bn to $1.5trn in value to the global economy over the next five years, as firms increasingly look to digitise their operations in order to stay ahead of the game.
“Manufacturing under Industry 4.0 has access to digital technologies such as the Internet-of-Things, Big Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Advanced Robotics, 3D printing, and Cloud Computing that have opened the door to incredible gains for early adopters,” Capgemini stated.
Currently, only 6% of manufacturers can be classified as ‘digital masters’. This, combined with the fact that as many as 76% of manufacturers currently have a smart factory initiative whilst only 14% of these are satisfied, suggests that the market for smart factories is set to explode within the next decade.
Business expectations are also likely to act as a driving factor, with manufacturers expecting on-time-delivery to accelerate by 13 times compared to 1990.
The potential benefits that would be available to businesses are countless, with the likes of IoT, big data analytics, AI, robotics, 3D printing and cloud-based computing services all paving the way for success.
Key sectors where manufacturers are already harnessing the potential of smart factories include industrial manufacturing, automotive, consumer goods, energy & utilities, aerospace & defence and the pharma, biotech and life science industries.