By Neill Young
Advanced use-cases including AR and robotics won’t necessarily be in the vanguard of employing 5G to enable smart manufacturing, with simpler services set to lead the way, a GSMA IoT expert predicted.
IoT verticals lead Neill Young argued services including asset tracking will be deployed in the near-term, delivering the ability to “connect a real density of assets” so manufacturers “can actually understand where everything” in their factories is at any given time.
Advanced use cases including machine vision (essentially using cameras as sensors), automated guided vehicles, robots, and AR and VR will come as 5G matures, bringing a “whole range of new technologies that can really transform manufacturing operations”.
Young expects operators will remain best placed to deliver digital transformation for industrial players, despite the potential for 5G to open the door to new entrants. He noted the technology is “much more than just a single application”, having the ability to “go beyond the factory walls” to connect supply chains and even customers.
During an interview, Young also discussed the benefits 5G brings compared with prior generations of mobile technology, while highlighting some of the work operators including Vodafone Group, Telefonica, Orange and China Mobile are already undertaking with leading manufacturers globally.