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Pandemic Puts Industry 4.0 in Perspective

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Industry 4.0 is no longer a point on a compass, or a catchy buzzword, analysts inflate. It is taking flight on wireless technology. Richardson RFPD, An Arrow Company, is on the front lines of the 5G revolution, with u-blox in tow, and nearly a half century of expertise to offer an expanding ecosystem of use cases.

Automation is at the heart of Industry 4.0, but the cornucopia of data collected via myriad IoT sensor nodes paired with cloud-based services empowers smart automation. As Ashish Parikh GM Global IoT & AI Solutions Richardson RFPD explained in a recent interview, “RF requirements are getting very complex, and we have the expertise. In IoT, it’s the “I” we’re really good at.”

The distributor of wireless IoT solutions infuses best practice with industry leading technology to breakdown data silos, assist areas like asset management and make better use of available resources. Parikh went on to note, how devices connect is critical, underscoring the importance of efficiency and battery performance.

When the pandemic struck, IoT took on a critical role in urging industry on – across verticals. As Parikh stated, “We’ve got to embrace this opportunity, and start doing something that is going to help us as we get out of this pandemic.” Richardson was able to solve problems relative to people in the field, in areas like route based monitoring, for instance and alleviating additional costs associated with maintenance and the need for people to go from to site-to-site.

Spring 2020 proved to provide enough chaos and uncertainty for a lifetime. COVID-19 caused organizations across verticals to hit the pause button, and question best laid IoT plans. But reticence gave way to confidence with the validation of sound strategy, confirmed Parikh.

For Richardson is in the unique position of working with a wide scope of deployments. Customers are exploring infrastructure options, and seeking high bandwidth, low latency connectivity solutions, and attain the results IoT promises.

From Wi-Fi6 and Bluetooth 5, to 5G, the proof is in the pudding of these use case driven queries. In terms of 5G for example, ideation is turning tangible.

“We’re seeing customers using 5G capabilities in new types of products,” and the reasons are clear. 5G new radio (NR) offers greater network capacity, elevated data rates and support for ultra-low latency operation. These leaps in capability enable the next evolution in industrial automation, greatly improving responsiveness, introducing improved control of robotic and automated guided vehicles from remote locations.

It is a time of action. For a client to remain nameless, the IoT enabler is assisting in adding 5G to a VR headset, one of many fascinating and emerging use cases. Parikh enthusiastically explained, “It’s interesting to see how people are leveraging the capabilities of the new networks. We’re still learning what we can do!”
 
Seamless, ubiquitous connectivity is table stakes, today. And with a burgeoning 5G innovation, adoption and applications, the price of admission is quickly becoming what you can do with it. 




Edited by Maurice Nagle
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