by T.R. Cutler
The following article appears in this month’s issue of Manufacturing Outlook eZine. For a limited time, we’re offering Manufacturing Talk Radio listeners a FREE subscription. Visit Manufacturingoutlook.com to subscribe today!
2022 industry prediction articles will be everywhere, so a jumpstart is needed. There is nearly universal agreement that the supply chain woes will not disappear any time soon. More than 1000 manufacturing CEOs of mid-sized companies report dealing first-hand with supply chain issues, recognizing inflation as a major driver. Costs skyrocket on labor rates, container shipping, and manufacturing parts. With wage pressures and high demand for shipping, inflation will continue to rise and supply chains will struggle through much of 2022.
To no one’s surprise, the future of e-commerce is on the smartphone. The COVID-19 pandemic pushed paper money into the background for most transactions, and reliance on mobile payments became ubiquitous. People rely on phones to take advantage of in-store AR capabilities and compare product prices.
Fixed wireless is the next big thing. Cell phones have historically operated on low-band signal, but as 5G proliferates, 2022 will see a huge rollout of mid-band signal. Carriers have been making major investments in mid-band technology for one particular use: fixed wireless replacement. The ability to access the Internet at business through only a wireless connection will be made possible with mid-band technology, and will benefit customers with faster speeds at low costs as carriers scramble to compete on price.
Currently, the U.S. has deployed 387,000 towers. In order to be able to take on mid- and high-band technology while still covering all the same footprint, as many as 6x “nodes” will be needed on the network. Additional cell towers will be built as a result, but many of those nodes will come in the form of signal repeaters.
Manufacturers should be embedding artificial intelligence, blockchain, and robotics in their operations today. The convergence of these new technologies will fundamentally shift the manufacturing enterprise. A new workforce with the ability to augment these technologies is beginning to emerge.
In the industry of the future, all industrial assets will be connected within the same factory as well as between factories. By the end of 2022, factories will be reorganized on a network model and become a real connected digital platform
Predicting failures and avoiding downtime is dominating the field of industry right now. “Downtime in your production line costs big money,” explained Angela Clement, a writer at Origin Writings. Ninety-eight percent of businesses report that a single hour of downtime costs them over $100,000. That is a lot of money to be wasting, which is why adopting preventative maintenance strategies is essential to keep costs down. Minimizing unplanned downtime and extending the life of factory machinery will always be trendy in up-and-coming years.
Thomas R. Cutler is the President and CEO of Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based, TR Cutler, Inc., celebrating its 23rd year. Cutler is the founder of the Manufacturing Media Consortium including more than 9000 journalists, editors, and economists writing about trends in manufacturing, industry, material handling, and process improvement. TR Cutler, Inc. recently launched three new divisions focusing on Gen Z, the African manufacturing sector, and manufacturing in the entertainment sector. Cutler authors more than 1000 feature articles annually regarding the manufacturing sector. Over 5000 industry leaders follow Cutler on Twitter daily at @ThomasRCutler. Contact Cutler at email@example.com.