CeBIT 2015: German industry’s digital transformation

The buzz these days is about Industry 4.0 – the fourth industrial revolution, the Internet of Things, the digitization of the world. It’s an attempt to find words to describe what’s happening right now: in essence, the analog world is coming to an end.

The first industrial revolution centered on the invention of the steam engine. Next came the electricity revolution, and then the computer revolution. Each caused great upheaval. And now, we’re told, everything is going to get networked and go online: the toothbrush with the smartphone, the machine with the product that it manufactures. We’re in for another transformation that will cover every sector of the economy.

So if Google starts building self-driving cars, what does that mean for Volkswagen?

Dieter Kempf, president of Germany’s IT industry association Bitkom, sees good opportunities for Germany, because the country has “a very large advantage in the traditional industrial sectors, where we’ve done an excellent job of digitization – in the ways it’s been understood so far.”

German automotive and mechanical engineers are globally first-rate, he said. Now it was necessary to take the next steps towards Industry 4.0, “i.e. to digitize the value-creation networks in the production process, so that at the end of the day, our production systems will be even better and even faster,” Kempf told DW.

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Source: Deutsche Welle

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