Deutsche Telekom partners up for smart factory push

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Deutsche Telekom is further expanding its partnerships to tap the Industry 4.0 opportunity.

Alongside network supplier Ericsson, new partners for smart production and development, EK Automation, Konica Minolta and Endress+Hauser, are now on board.

With its campus networks, Deutsche Telekom supports applications for smart factories such as automated guided vehicle systems (AGVs), industrial measurement technology and augmented reality glasses.

"Our development of a complete 5G ecosystem for industry will accelerate the pace of digitisation in industry. This will strengthen Germany's position in global competition," said Claudia Nemat, Board member for Technology and Innovation at Deutsche Telekom. "We enjoy working with renowned and experienced partners. More and more industries are being added. In this way, our offering is becoming increasingly complete." 

New partners

EK Automation GmbH manufactures automated guided vehicle systems. Recently, together with Deutsche Telekom's incubator, Hubraum, the company equipped transport robots with 3D cameras. For the first time, the technicians integrated a 3D obstacle detection with dynamic route planning into the edge cloud. The transport robot sends the 3D camera images to the cloud for analysis almost in real-time via the Telekom 5G network. This enables the vehicle to immediately avoid obstacles placed in the roadway.

Konica Minolta has over 140 years of experience in optical systems. Together with Deutsche Telekom, the company is further developing its AIRe Lens. The lightweight augmented reality glasses help  technicians work hands-free with step-by-step instructions on the display, as well as to collaborate with remote colleagues. In future, AIRe Lens will deliver data directly via Telekom's 5G network. 

Endress+Hauser provides measurement and automation technology. The company will be one of the first manufacturers to equip its sensors with mobile radio modules. WIth 5G, numerous measuring devices will be able to transmit large amounts of process and device data in parallel and in real-time. These can, for example, be evaluated in cloud applications for predictive plant maintenance.