In a report from 2015, McKinsey & Co., a consultancy, estimated that the IoT’s potential value to manufacturing, from operations and equipment optimization alone, lies between US$ 1.2 and 3.7 trillion. Such estimates are probably already obsolete, as even more powerful technology is developed and deployed. However, they do point to a starting point in illustrating the order of magnitude of upcoming change as the digitization phenomenon unfolds. The changes already underway in service (industrial, technical, after-sales or field service) parallel those in manufacturing. In the not too distant future, we can expect that: Smart Connected Products will self-diagnose problems; Maintenance will become, almost exclusively, predictive; Spare parts will be 3D printed; Needed interventions and optimizations at any level will be carried out according to AI generated recommendations; And humans will interact at a deeper level with machines through Augmented Reality, whether the machine is in the same room or on the other side of the planet. The nature of the service business will shift from technical labor and logistics to knowledge management and exchange. Service delivery will change drastically as will the nature of competition and business models. Servitization, in the sense of product-as-a-service (PaaS), enabled by digitization and based on platforms will become ubiquitous. The implications for jobs, companies, productivity, growth, and profits will be vast, though at present they are still the subject of on-going debate and quite unknown.

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