Development of Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 Timeline

Emerging innovations in advanced automation, led in large part by machine vision, are predicted to spark a fourth industrial revolution: Industry 4.0

The term Industry 4.0 is elusive and originates from the identification of three prior "industrial revolutions," the most recent of which relates to the adaptation of computers, programmable tools and digitization of manufacturing environments in the 1970s. References to "Industry 4.0" are common, as are references to the German "Industrie 4.0," where the concept was originally championed. In the United States, it is sometimes called the "Industrial Internet of Things" and considered a subset of the "Internet of Things." This is sometimes truncated as "Industry of Things. 

Industry 4.0 began as an initiative of the German government's "High-Tech Strategy 2020 Action Plan" to boost the country's manufacturing. The German government continues to invest hundreds of millions of dollars to encourage research across academia, business and government. While the earliest, strongest interest in Industry 4.0 developments has come from German companies and their neighbors, interest in this emerging concept is now increasing amongst companies all around the world.

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Today, Industry 4.0 is predicted to deliver exciting developments in automation and process improvement, offering lower production costs, decreased waste, increased flexibility and higher quality throughout the production and distribution cycle. Machine vision will be an essential element of Industry 4.0's progression.

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