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Upcoming Manufacturing Trends to Look Forward to in 2017

Mike Jeffries | December 8, 2016

Trendsfor2017.jpegEvery industry bears a responsibility towards consumers to constantly evolve and stay on top of the latest trends and innovations. This holds especially true for the manufacturing industry. Let's take a look at some of the most important trends the industry will witness in 2017:


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1. Automation

As AI capabilities continue to evolve, more and more sophisticated software is being developed that can in some instances entirely replace the human worker with a machine worker. Expect to see more such automated work stations in factories in the coming year.

2. Green Technology

The one threat that every nation faces today is environmental degradation, and the voices demanding more environmentally-friendly manufacturing practices are growing in strength. Thus we will see a shift towards manufacturing techniques which take into account the effect of their operations on environmental surroundings.

3. 3D Printing

With the price of 3D printers lowering and the technology becoming more accessible, the manufacturing industry has welcomed 3D printing with open arms. More and more products will be manufactured using 3D printers, with the added benefit of faster prototyping, more complex designs and economical, small scale production of goods.  

4. Crowd Sourced Products

Manufacturing is no longer the primary domain of large companies. With the help of the internet, people from all over the world can offer their skills and expertise for the development of a product that they feel passionate about. This means more people are starting small-scale businesses than ever and competing directly with the big boys!

5. Reshoring

The trend of manufacturing work returning to American shores will continue into the next year, as more and more company owners realize the dangers of overseas manufacturing. This frequently results in gross copyright violation and the production of shoddy material, which can hurt the company's reputation.

6. Internet of Things (IoT)

The internet of things is going to make the standard factory more interconnected than ever. Leading to a constant stream of information about the manufacturing process being available, and prompt response in times of crisis by those who are in charge.

Thus, we see that among other developments, environmental concerns are going to take center stage, while AI software will exert more control over the manufacturing process. It remains to be seen which of these trends will stand the test of time and which will simply be a flash in the pan.

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Topics: manufacturing, internet of things

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