Top Technology Trends: Supply Chain 2020 – Part 2

Top Technology Trends - Supply Chain 2020 – Part 2In the year of the pandemic, technology is more important than ever for supply chains—here are four more technological trends to pay attention to in 2020.

Supply chain technology comes in many forms. Last week’s article covered four of the most prominent technology trends this year as outlined by Gartner. It showed just how diverse and varied the technological landscape is for supply chains. As more and more is asked of them—these demands having only been exacerbated by the onset of the COVID-19 crisis—the more sophisticated they have to be. As such, previously overlooked components of supply chains success, such as virtual reality, are now coming to the fore.

An article from earlier this year by Supply Chain 24/7 highlights the multifaceted demands placed upon supply chains in 2020,

The supply chain technology trends for 2020 reflect the growing demands for more service, more value, faster shipping, cheaper shipping, and an unrelenting pace to predict what’s going to happen next.

This article by Morai Logistics covers four more technology trends outlined by Gartner, what they are, and why they’re important.

Edge Computing and Analytics

Some technological trends mark a paradigm shift. That is very much the case with edge computing. Edge computing is a form of computing where the data that is processed is close to where the data comes from. Essentially, it comes down to proximity. Companies are currently operating in the era of the cloud. Where the data that is computed is data coming from one of only a handful of major cloud providers.

Edge computing changes that, allowing the data to travel a much shorter distance. Consequently, a whole host of benefits correspond with this change. These include greater data processing speed, higher online security, cost cutting, and more.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence. The technology that has seemingly been a trend for many years and will continue to be for many years to come. AI and its many subsets (such as machine learning) offer a wide spectrum of possibilities for companies. An example of one of its many uses is that it empowers companies to more easily decipher the vast amount of data they gather.

With the primacy of big data in the supply chain, it’s easy to see how just this single use is so important. The same is true for many others. As such, many of these technologies have already become an integral part of supply chains. Yet, their many applications and progressive iterations means they’ll remain significant for a long time still.

5G Networks

The long-hyped 5G technology is closer to a reality than ever. 5G marks the next step in internet speed, significantly improving upon the data speed currently experienced. Thus, it has obvious advantages for the supply chain. Some of these advantages being reduced latency and greater real-time visibility. However, it’s worth noting that 5G implementation is still a little ways away and has only been further delayed by the pandemic. Hence, whether it remains a viable technology trend this year is in question.

Immersive Experience

Supply chain professionals are always looking for new ways to improve upon their supply chains. Immersive experience technology presents such an opportunity. It’s a broad term under which augmented, virtual, and mixed reality fall. In short, it refers to any technology that attempts to present the physical world digitally. This type of technology can go a long way for workers within the supply chain. This is because it allows them to learn or train their onsite skills in the safety of a virtual world.

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