Jun 21, 2019
| 8 min read

Insights

LiveWorx 2019: Sewing Up Your Digital Strategy with "Digital Thread"

Last week I attended and presented at the LiveWorx 2019 digital transformation event in Boston, Massachusetts. A lot of the event really pushed forward many of the themes we already see underway in Connected Industry, so the validation was great to witness. There was significant discussion on the roles of AR, analytics, and connectivity being the enablers of digital transformation going forward. 

AR is real, but will require 5G & edge technologies to make it become a reality 

There was lots of discussion around AR use cases like training and surveyingFrom panels  featuring Rockwell, Lockheed Martin, and ExxonMobilthere is a real breakthrough, especially in surveying and maintenance. Packaging firmTetrapak is using Microsoft’s HoloLensto access experts who can remotely guide field operations through repairs. 

AR could be a critical tool to help solve the worker shortage and widening skills gap of digital business. The initial focus is on manufacturing & quality assurancetraining & safety, maintenance & field service.

The biggest challenge is getting the data to the user and 5G will be tremendously helpful in shuttling data efficiently across the network.  

Everywhere, the focus was on Industry 4.0  

There were many great use cases on manufacturing, but Industry 4.0 enablement is clearly a highly fragmented market providing both opportunities and challenges.  

New product introduction cycles, shorter product life cycles and increasing product complexities pose challenges for efficient collaboration between OEM, ODM, EMS and downstream suppliers. The Digital Thread – enabling the ability to link design all the way through manufacturing, product management and servicecan help resolve issues and disconnected processes, product data and resources between multiple stakeholders.   

LiveWorx
LiveWorx 2019 Keynote Presentation, photographed by Wim D'Hondt

 

The key takeaways at the event as I saw them? 

  • Digital transformation is here and has promise, but many applications are still missing a credible value proposition and go-to-market strategy.  
  • AR technology is great, but the solution needs to be truly customer-centric, to be useful and practical.
  • Delivery of digital transformation’s promises requires the right internal executive stakeholder team and delivery capabilityall the way up to the board/C-suite level. It’s critical to get board support to make a pivotal shift from product to services. 
  • Ecosystem is critical, too. It starts with working with the right partners and across the best possible ecosystems (like Amazon, Google, Microsoft). Choose the right platform provider, connectivity option and support an ecosystem -- and avoid unnecessary solution fragmentation. 

 

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Momenta Partners encompasses leading Strategic Advisory, Talent, and Venture practices. We’re the guiding hand behind leading industrials’ IoT strategies, over 200 IoT leadership placements, and 25+ young IoT disruptors.  Schedule  a free consultation to learn more about our Connected Industry practice.