Top Predictions for Manufacturing In 2016 and Beyond

It’s hard to believe that we’re already in Q4—it seems like just yesterday we were making predictions about 2015. While no one has a crystal ball that can predict the future, let’s take a look at some of Garnters’ predictions for 2016.

The Gartner Symposium/ITxpo was held from October 4-8 in Orlando, Florida. One of the main features of the symposium was to outline their predictions for manufacturing technology in 2016, hosted by David Crearley, their Vice President and also Gartner Fellow. The emergence of new strategic technologies like Smart Machines and Digital Mesh, as well as completely new IT applications like Advanced System Architectures, Adaptive Security Architectures, Internet of Things Architecture and Platforms and Mesh App and Service Architectures have made this symposium fascinating for everyone in manufacturing.

Smart Machines and Algorithms Will Further Revolutionize Manufacturing
Gartner is predicting that algorithms are set to galvanize enterprises and are implying that value chains will be positively impacted. The algorithms will be employed to automate a number of background tasks that are currently performed by smart machines.

Gartners Top Predictions for 2016

Device Mesh
Gartner considers the device mesh to include consumer electronic devices, mobile devices, wearables, automotive devices and devices used in the environment. The most compelling aspect of this trend for manufacturers is that it provides the ability to capture customer feedback as well as quality, time to market, and cost feedback at any part of the products journey throughout the value chain of an organization.

Ambient UX
With the digital mesh serving as a foundation, the next level of progression is to provide a consistent user experience across all channels and applications. At the present time this is attainable with platforms based in the cloud. The growth of digital manufacturing will be dependent on companies success in delivering a consistent ambient UX to their shop floor.

3D Printing Raw Materials
The growth in the number of materials which are 3D printable is set to stimulate annual compound growth of 64.1% for enterprise level 3D printer shipments through until the end of 2019. This means that assembly lines and supply chains will need to be reconfigured to get the most out of 3D printing.

Information from Everything
Everything within the digital mesh generates, transmits and uses information. This goes beyond the usual formats of video, audio and textual information to extend to contextual and sensory information.

Advanced Machine Learning
This will be driven by deep neural nets to go beyond what we know as classic computation and information databases to systems that can learn and perceive the world autonomously.

What are some of your predictions for 2016 and beyond? Share your thoughts by commenting on this post, or on our Facebook and twitter pages.