The possibilities inherent in applying digitization to industry has earned a name of its own, Industry 4.0, with modified spelling when applied to Germany. In Europe, Germany is the leading star of this fourth industrial revolution. Progress on that front has not been as rapid as some had hoped due to some obstacles identified by a Mckinsey and Co. report published in March 2016. But that is set to change now with the arrival of clouds built in Germany to meet the needs of Germany’s Industry 4.0.
The Mckinsey report, “Industry 4.0after the initial hype” (PDF download ) looks at perception, progress, and problems faced by the evolution of manufacturing in a digital age. It is based on survey responses from 300 industry experts in Germany, the US, and Japan. In a nutshell, the anticipation raised a few years ago has resulted in some disappointments, as some businesses did not come up with a clear plan and timeline for implementing a digital strategy. At this point, 60 percent of those surveyed said that they have come up against obstacles to executing digital strategies.
A fundamental problem for some of the companies was finding a way to integrate the data that comes in from various sources, something that is essential to extracting a comprehensive picture of the process to maximize efficiency that doesn’t compromise the data security or ownership when it passes into “third party technology and software providers.” For the companies in Germany, there’s the additional concern of being certain to comply with the data privacy regulations in place and the distrust of datacenters located outside the country.
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