We’ve Reached the 4th Industrial Revolution – Here’s What That Means

Not too long ago companies began to experience Web 2.0:  when websites and content became more mainstream and just about anybody could upload their own content to the web. Essentially, we reached the second wave of the internet era when things got more “social” online.

Fast forward to now, and we’re coming across the term “Industry 4.0” – but what does it mean? Have we skipped the 3.0 stage? Believe it or not, the term has less to do with the internet itself, and everything to do with industry as a whole. The fact that Industry 4.0 refers to the Internet of Things (IoT), is mere coincidence.

So, where does the number 4 come from? Simply, this is our 4th major industrial revolution. The first, most well-known revolution came about as a result of steam technology – allowing for faster transportation options. The second came from electric power, which still powers just about everything today. The third dealt with computing, which allowed for faster problem solving than ever before. And now, with the spread of wireless technology and interconnectedness, we’ve reached the 4th industrial revolution: the Internet of Things.

For manufacturers, this revolution is leading to previously unimagined connectivity and control over processes. If a machine needs servicing, it can send a message to its operator letting him or her know. If plant managers want to check on productivity trends in comparison to past years, all of that data is easily available to review. And if they want to predict future models, that’s also possible thanks to the spread of Big Data. Basically, factories are getting smarter, which makes work easier for managers and employees as a lot of the guesswork is taken out of the equation.

So, whereas the previous industrial revolutions led to better products for the public, the current industrial revolution is leading to better production for the factories themselves. Where do you think we’ll go from here? Let us know bysending us a tweet!

Leave a Reply