The Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to transform industrial production within the next decade. The idea of a fourth industrial revolution – sometimes referred to as ‘Industry 4.0’ or ‘the industrial internet’ – is taking hold.
This transformation will see the entire value chain connected digitally, allowing autonomous factories to build products tailored to individual consumers. Internet-enabled chips equipped with sensors will be embedded at every stage of the process, making rich streams of information available in real time. Big data analysis and machine learning will make it possible to use this data to build a value chain that is entirely flexible.
The IoT has the power to change the world in the same way mechanisation transformed the textile industry in the 18th century, the introduction of mass electrically powered production at the turn of the 20th century and the widespread adoption of computers in manufacturing in the 1980s.