“The Fourth Industrial Revolution describes the intersection of the physical and digital worlds.” It’s a convergence of advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, the Internet of Things (IoT), 3D printing, big data & cloud services, quantum computing, blockchain and other technologies.
The concept behind digital transformation is to determine how technology shapes new processes providing efficiency and effectiveness. It’s not just about changing an existing service into a digital version but also improving it.
At FroXx, our aim is to develop innovative, cost-effective solutions that facilitate a seamless interaction between humans and machines and to improve working conditions.
Today we will talk about the central role of extended reality and digital transformation in the Industry 4.0 with Cyrine Nasri – Head of Innovation and Prototyping at FroXx GmbH.
Hello Cyrine! In a nutshell, how is digitalization supporting business growth?
Industrial digitization faced its biggest test to date: the health and social crises of the past months have led to asymmetric impacts in many business environments. Companies experienced extraordinary cross-sectorial working conditions; sudden high/low load. The technologies of the ongoing Industry 4.0 helped companies in their efforts and shaped a competitive advantage for companies that had already scaled digital technologies, perhaps it was an eye-opener to those that were still scaling and a wake-up call for latecomers to the Industry 4.0 journey.
Digitalization is using digital technologies to scale a business model to a new level. It is an open opportunity where creating new revenue and producing value are possible. Things will not only be faster but also better and cheaper than your competition.
Can you describe for us the main properties of Extended Reality, and in what type of industries do they currently have an impact?
Extended Reality (XR) is a collection of all immersive technologies that combine real and virtual worlds. It encompasses reality and virtuality to create a new environment. Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Mixed Reality (MR) are the three pillars of the extended reality.
The advancement of human-machine interaction as well as the development of wearable devices and computers makes us explore new experiences in a wide range of applications including entertainment, healthcare, education, logistics, manufacturing and so on.
The core of your activity focuses on providing solutions using MR. What is the difference between AR and MR?
In our experience, there is a lot of confusion when it comes to Augmented and Mixed Reality. It is important to know that AR overlay sounds, images, text in the real world using a smartphone or tablet. An example that we should have seen or tested are Snapchat filters putting digital objects like glasses and hats onto the head of a user. MR gives a fully immersive experience where both real-world and digital objects co-exist and interact in real time. A good example of an MR device is Microsoft’s HoloLens 2, which allows users to interact with digital objects placed in a room. FroXx have joined the Microsoft Partnership Network program and have the goal to become a member of the MRPP (Mixed Reality Partnership Program) to further develop data sets for our solutions.
Which segments of the market do FroXx’s MR solutions cover?
MR technology provides smart applications and covers different industries. Our core values are sustainability, efficiency, quality and productivity. Our solutions will cover two segments of the fourth generation industry.
We selected the Tower companies’ segment to support the steep increase in antenna deployments for the ongoing 5G rollout. The embedded intelligence of the software will be of use to teams and experts across the world, as well as the technicians in the field. They will receive real-time instructions for installation and maintenance inside the cabinet.
The other segment is data centers. Our solution will provide remote assistance and smart ‘hands’ and ‘eyes’. Highly skilled engineers will provide remote support; on the one hand you save time and money, and on the other hand you achieve better first-time fix rates and reduce resolution time.
How can 5G improve your capabilities, particularly in the telco sector?
5G technology is about to change the world. Beyond speed increase, the technology is expected to unleash a massive production and exploitation of IoT. Aside from making our mobile service better, 5G technology can usher in new immersive experiences such as VR and AR with faster and uniform data rates.
In the telco sector, we will support the rollout of 5G that will unleash a strong market demand for antenna installations. Our solution will provide the capabilities to get this done faster, more efficiently and at lower costs.
To conclude, can you share, in two sentences, FroXx’s mission and vision?
At FroXx, our motto is to ‘merge’ people, machines and processes to facilitate human interaction with technology and create tangible solutions for Industry 4.0. We combine digitalization with smart solutions in order to refine processes, improve quality and promote sustainability.
Thank you very much, Cyrine. FroXx is playing an important role in digitalization and offers exciting solutions. I wish you and FroXx the best of luck in achieving your goals. Have a good day!
Nicky Babayeva, Head of MarCom and Art Director Potsdam, Germany.