Wednesday, 27 March 2019 10:13

Ericsson launches new solution to ‘accelerate’ 4G digital transformation, path to 5G

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Swedish communications giant Ericsson says it has launched an easy-to-use cellular connectivity solution aimed at accelerating industry 4.0 digital transformation.

The solution — Industry Connect — is designed to enable communication service providers to offer dedicated cellular networks at factories and warehouses starting with 4G/LTE, with a clear path to 5G.

According to Ericsson, the offering strengthens its private networks and IoT portfolios by making 4G and 5G technologies accessible to new industrial markets.

Purpose-built for industrial environments such as factories and warehouses, the dedicated cellular connectivity solution is aimed at enabling secure, reliable coverage with high device density and predictable latency.

“With a network management experience designed to be easy to use and manage for information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) professionals, the solution aims to make cellular technology rapidly deployable for factory and warehouse staff,” Ericsson says.

“With industrial-grade wireless connectivity, Ericsson Industry Connect can enable innovative Industry 4.0 use cases such as: digital twin inspection (a real-time digital replica of a physical entity) with massive amounts of sensors, mobility for human machine interface (HMI) instructions for workers, collision avoidance and remote control for autonomous guided vehicles ,and collaborative robotics for automated operations.”

Åsa Tamsons, senior vice-president, Head of Business Area Technologies and New Businesses, Ericsson, says: “Ericsson Industry Connect is built on design thinking to meet industrial customers’ requirements on speed, reliability and security, while being easy to install and manage”.

“It helps enterprises to accelerate their automation and operational efficiency to the next level. It complements service providers’ offerings to enterprises with a solution that is easy to scale.

“Ericsson Industry Connect increases the relevance of cellular solutions in the high growing segment of industrial connectivity - leveraging Ericsson’s technology leadership, strength in connectivity, and R&D investments to date.”

Ericsson said Swedish provider of transport solutions, Scania, had already implemented Industry Connect in its smart production lab in Södertälje, Sweden.

Roger Hartonen, senior manager, Industrial IT, Scania Group, says: “High quality, fast, and secure connectivity of our industrial environment is now an absolute must for us. Ericsson Industry Connect gives us reliable wireless connectivity which will enable flexibility for us on the factory floor.

“At Scania, we are driving the shift toward sustainable transport by continuously innovating our manufacturing processes.”

According to Pierce Owen, principal analyst, ABI Research, “the technology case for private LTE has existed for some time now, but with Industry Connect, Ericsson has productised that technology in a way that empowers implementers and operators to deliver the benefits of private LTE to factories and warehouses with a real business case”.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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