BERLIN, March 27 (Xinhua) -- German engineering and electronics company Robert Bosch GmbH is planning to increase annual sales to 1 billion euros (1.13 billion U.S. dollars) with networked production and logistics systems by 2022, the company announced on Wednesday.
In the last four years, Bosch had generated over 1.5 billion euros through Industry 4.0 applications. According to preliminary figures, its division for networking production and logistics grew by 8.9 percent last year with revenues rising to 7.4 billion euros.
"Industry 4.0 pays off. Digital and networked solutions make factories more efficient, flexible and productive," said Rolf Najork, chief executive officer (CEO) of Robert Bosch.
For many German companies, Industry 4.0 had long been a reality as "every fourth machine is already connected to the internet," Clemens Otte, deputy head of Digitalization and Innovation at the Federation of German Industries (BDI), told Xinhua on Wednesday.
To highlight Bosch's work in the field of Industry 4.0, the company will be presenting a "networked factory" at the upcoming Hannover Messe. Bosch CEO Najork said at a kick-off event of the Hannover fair on Wednesday that he expected the "factory of the future" to happen in the next 10 to 15 years.
Bosch's vision of the factory of the future includes autonomous transport vehicles, digital workstations and quality testing through artificial intelligence (AI). A "smart floor" for example, Bosch CEO Najork added, would charge up machines from below and transfer data between machines and systems.
The German electronics company which is the world's third largest supplier for the automotive sector, announced that "all Bosch products will either have AI or be developed and produced with its help" in the next six or seven years.
"With the possibilities of artificial intelligence, the next stage of industry 4.0 is now being ignited," said BDI expert Otte.
The new high-speed mobile network 5G would play a central role by enabling efficient and fast communication between machines and systems, according to Bosch. The German electronics company is planning to test 5G in its own plants before the end of this year.
Bosch CEO Najork stressed that "5G must become a global standard" in order to successfully drive forward the German Industry 4.0.