The cities of Eindhoven and Taipei have had a good relationship going on for some time already. The mayor of Taipei will be visiting Eindhoven on 30-31 January to be informed about the developments in the field of Smart Cities. A week before the mayor’s visit, another delegation was here to give a lecture at the High Tech Campus on 23 Jan.
The speaker is the president of Advantech, Mr. Chaney Ho, on the topic Leading the NEXT – Innovate and Co-Create. Advantech is a high-tech company (that also has an office in Son) whose mission is to enable an intelligent planet with Automation and Embedded Computing to create smarter working and living spaces. Backed by well-researched data and real-life examples, Mr. Ho spoke about how mega trends, disruptive technologies and innovative business models can cause the rise or fall of companies in the age of Industry 4.0. Then he shared examples of how Advantech deployed a megatrend with results, and ended his presentation with helpful tips.
Mr. Ho began with an impactful slide on how some mighty companies fall, as they failed to embrace megatrends, disruptive technologies and new business innovation models in their company strategies. Much of the presentation focused on the megatrend de-globalization, a scenario where the manufacturing landscape is experiencing a change: a reversal of globalization. From outsourcing to self-made, mass production to customization, centralization (in high growth economies) to decentralization (local economies). “How can we adopt smart technologies to increase manufacturing productivity at even lower costs, so that manufacturing can also be done locally, thereby increasing local employment?” was how Mr. Ho described the phenomena. He cited some developments, for example: America reducing corporate taxes (from 36% to 21%) so that cash goes to private companies to stimulate the economy; the “Made in China 2025” initiative paving way for localization in China as well.
On disruptive technologies, Internet of Things (IoT) and especially Artificial Intelligence (AI) dominate the current trend and therefore high on the agenda. AI will accelerate faster with massive data proliferation, high-speed hardware and freely-available open source software. Citing a research by Merrill Lynch, Mr. Ho points out that AI opportunities will have a distribution as follows: service (56%), hardware (30%) and software (14%). Within Advantech, AI has been deployed successfully in predictive maintenance of screw production. Screws are made in molds, when the molds break apart, a massive mess has to be cleaned up. To prevent this, a smart AI sensor (which was trained over 1000 times) is installed in the mold, monitoring of the mold is now easier, and the operation can be aborted in time once anomalies are observed. A lot more has been done in Advantech, whose success is summarized below. In closing the presentation, Mr. Ho encouraged everyone to Lead the NEXT. His advice is to follow the mega trends of the moment, embrace any disruptive phenomena, and continue to practice innovation. For more information, presentation slides of Mr. Ho’s lecture can be found here.
For Eindhoven News: Joyce Fong.