The trend of Smartification refers to the process of retrofitting or producing previously disconnected analog assets with sensor and wireless technologies, making them ‘smart’ and connected, bridging the analog-digital divide. Smartification enables users to collect a variety of sensor data for analysis, performance measurement, simulations, and data-based decisions.
A survey of 2,400 senior executives found that 93% of the companies surveyed plan to further increase investment in the area of data and analytics. In 2021, already 11.3 billion devices were used to collect data on behavioral patterns, operations, and the utilization of assets, machinery, and facilities. This number is certainly continuing to grow as more and more companies are also integrating analog assets and systems into the IT ecosystem to obtain a holistic view of all processes and key performance indicators. Retrofitting assets with sensors in particular is therefore becoming increasingly important for a comprehensive data-based view of operations and, as the cost of sensors falls, this option becomes more scalable.
The Smartification trend will have moderate impact on the logistics industry as it drives visibility and transparency for optimization and enables data-driven decision making. However, especially retrofitting equipment and assets as well as integration in IT systems takes time. Therefore a few more years will pass before we are likely to see the widespread adoption of smartification applications across industries.