Hanover Fair Intensifies the Drive Toward the Fourth Industrial Revolution
Keywords: Industry 4.0, Automation, Industrial Markets, Germany, Russia, Turkey, Energy, Infrastructure.
Germany's Hanover Fair opened its gates again last month to the world of industry and technology. As mentioned in an earlier ARC Insight, this year's unofficial motto was "Industry 4.0," an umbrella term for the digitalization of manufacturing that is part substance and part hype. Russia was the fair's partner country, but was represented more by large-scale concepts of what the country might achieve rather than what it can currently offer. China and Turkey made a bigger splash with pavilions of countless smaller suppliers exhibiting world-class industrial products and services. Finally, industrial organizations used the show to announce statistics on the health and future prospects of our industry in challenging times.
Automation Takes a Back Seat
The Hanover Fair remains the world's largest trade show for industry, even as it has lost some of its luster over the years. Visitors from all over the world attend this fair to discover new technologies for industry, and many companies use the occasion to make major announcements or launch products. However, in recent years, automation has taken a back seat at Hanover while current trends, such as energy and infrastructure, are spotlighted. A clutch of major automation suppliers withdrew completely from the fair a few years ago, with some stating that they would instead invest their budgets in other event formats. Hall 9, which years ago became the premiere hall for automation when Siemens moved its booth there from the cramped and confining hall 11, no longer felt like the magnet for automation companies. Rather, the top suppliers are now spread out haphazardly over several halls, as if each is seeking to become the local "hall prince", surrounded by lesser automation vassals.
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