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Advanced connectivity for realizing the Intelligent Industry

26 May 2023

Hannover Messe is the world’s largest industrial fair, with thousands of exhibitors from all over the world demonstrating state-of-the-art Industry 4.0 advancements.

It is the Mecca of Digital Transformation and Industrial technology trends; the right place to be for experts in Data & AI, Industrial IoT, and of course, 5G. This year, Hannover Messe was extra special – as the first in-person full gathering post covid, it was a great showcase of how the industry is becoming more digital and intelligent and how various emerging technologies are coming together to enable Industry 4.0.

Who would have imagined a few years ago that more than 50% of MWC 2023 attendees would be from industry and there would be a 5G Arena and a fifth-anniversary celebration of 5G ACIA at HM 2023!

This year’s theme very aptly was “Make the Difference” as it was all about how change, new tech, and digitalization drive impact and create a better world – be it smarter production, circular economy, or energy efficiency and sustainability.

Capgemini was in sync with the HM theme, its vision that the future of industry is intelligent, and how we are working with clients and partners to pioneer “Intelligent Industry.” The Capgemini booth featured the transformative power of technologies across the end-to-end value chain for manufacturing: Intelligent Products & Services, Smart Plant, and Intelligent Supply Chain. In addition, several key technological advancements and innovations from Capgemini were demonstrated, such as Insights for Intelligent Industry, Software-Driven Transformation, Sustainability, and the Metaverse. Eight showcases, including case studies with prominent industrial players and 52 stage presentations with clients and partners, highlighted our leadership position as a company that defines the future of manufacturing.

It is our strong conviction that as the industry becomes more intelligent and digital, current industrial connectivity must keep pace. That’s why evolving towards advanced connectivity is essential for realizing intelligent industry. The key capabilities one would look for in advanced connectivity are agility, flexibility, performance, security, energy efficiency, ease of installation/maintenance, commercial viability, location accuracy, capability to support diverse industrial applications with specific requirements, and ability to support diverse industrial applications co-existing and working in synch. Meeting such capabilities is not easy and we believe that industrial connectivity will evolve and advance over time. Currently, industrial ethernet and Wi-Fi WLANs are the two most used industrial connectivity technologies and each of them has its limitations regarding these key capabilities. 5G addresses most of them(already available or planned in upcoming releases) and hence becomes a strong contender to adopt along with current technologies during this evolution towards advanced industrial connectivity.

We saw great dedication and innovation demonstrated for 5G across the Fair. There were clear signs that 5G is coming of age and the ecosystem is maturing for its industrial deployments. The 5G Alliance for Connected Industries and Automation (5G-ACIA), together with Deutsche Messe AG and VDMA, organized a 5G arena featuring 50 exhibitors whose sole focus was on 5G and the tremendous capability it unlocks for industry.

With the Capgemini booth buzzing with visitors, we had the opportunity to interact with the Industry 4.0 leaders of multiple global manufacturing organizations. It is evident that our clients are pivoting towards open and modular platforms, focused on optimizing production by increasing automation, and relying more on large amounts of data being processed in real-time and requiring heavy video/multimedia content analytics. Mobility and agility in operations are also key. All this poses additional burdens on existing connectivity infrastructure. Current connectivity solutions are being re-examined and 5G is being discussed not in terms of “what can 5G do for the OT” but rather “how to adopt 5G.” Some key takeaways to summarize:

  • The 5G solution ecosystem (network equipment, devices, compliance with industry requirements, etc.) is growing rapidly. New industrial gateways, routers, performance measurement solutions, and even E2E 5G PN solution vendors are emerging in the market and developing a competitive landscape and contributing to the democratization of the technology and lowering of costs.
  • Key drivers for the adoption of 5G or re-evaluation of existing connectivity technology include the operation of large fleets of AGVs/AIVs; connected and augmented digital worker solutions that require high video quality, secure connectivity with ubiquitous coverage in a reliable manner; retrofitting/augmentation of IIoT sensors and, of course, new industrial automation solutions. Combined applications of real-time video, XR, AI/ML, AGVs/AIVs and IIoT drive significant operational benefits and justify the adoption of advanced mobile technologies.
  • 5G standards have matured and new industrial features are being demonstrated including Time-Sensitive-Networking and Profinet over 5G, indoor location positioning with sub-100cm accurate and converged core for 5G and non-3GPP traffic.
  • Gigafactories, and similarly any greenfield industrial environment, are strong candidates for 5G adoption and industrial connectivity evolution.

TelcoInsights is a series of posts about the latest trends and opportunities in the telecommunications industry – powered by a community of global industry experts and thought leaders.


Monika Gupta

Group 5G & Edge Lead for Industries & Alliances
Monika Gupta is the global 5G & Edge expert leading industry use cases and alliances at Capgemini. She also leads the industry focused Capgemini’s 5G lab in Mumbai. She works with Capgemini clients on how they can adopt 5G, Edge and complementary technologies for their data-driven digital transformation.

Anastasia Karatrantou

Senior Manager, 5G & Edge Business Development, Capgemini Group
“5G creates the opportunity to address industrial networks as an asset rather than a commodity—a concept that is quite often overlooked. 5G can deliver the predictable and highly reliable performance that is required to power all applications that are smart, immersive, and autonomous, helping companies deliver on the promise of Intelligent Industry.”