With 5G signals, wireless charging and intelligent lighting, the high-speed railway line connecting Beijing and Zhangjiakou is a showcase of China's latest achievements in railway development from equipment manufacturingand newmaterials to newartificial intelligence technology. (Xinhua/Zhang Chenlin)
BEIJING, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- With the mass adoption of information technologies, the conventional production concept has been challenged and a new manufacturing model far different from before is taking shape.
When Internet platforms penetrate into the manufacturing sector, and when the new forces of manufacturing grow at an accelerated pace, the industrial pattern will also create new opportunities for the manufacturing industry.
-- When established brands meets new platforms
Xpeng Motors, a new energy vehicle (NEV) manufacturing giant in China, launched the intelligent SUV G3i, which is equipped with automatic driving assistance and omni-scenario automatic parking, and unveiled its free power up plan for car owners at the 2020 Beijing auto show.
Data-driven development and intelligent travel are the key changes in the automobile industry and the strategic focus for future development. On this "new track", new forces in car making are rising rapidly, and showing a trend of rivaling with traditional brands.
Meanwhile, Chinese leading e-commerce enterprises such as Alibaba launched the "Rhinoceros Manufacturing" platform to venture into the garment sector, while others like You.163.com and Suning.com also brought together high-quality manufacturers to connect established brands with C2M (Customer TO Manufactory) new platforms.
"The new-generation manufacturing and traditional brands vary greatly in the models and paths," said Zhang Xinhong, chief information officer of the State Information Center.
The new platforms, which approach the users through social media and integrate the ecosystem of manufacturing, will significantly shorten the production cycles, make manufacturers more agile in responding to the market demands, and gradually expand the manufacturing boundary.
"We should view new-generation manufacturing as an opportunity to achieve win-win cooperation rather than to compete with each other", said Chen Dapeng, President of China National Garment Association.
Chen added that consumption upgrading brings about diversification and personalization of demands, and a production model which is more flexible internally and more synergistic externally has become the general trend. Brands should actively move to the cloud leveraging the strength of platforms, and the platforms should also rely on the edges the brands have accumulated in the industry chain and R&D manufacturing over time.
As the platforms cooperate with manufacturers in supply chain, and brands step up the labeling and application of data and promote integrated development, a more open business model is gradually surfacing.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), as of June this year, the e-commerce penetration rate has reached 63 percent across the national industrial sector, and the penetration rate of the innovation and entrepreneurship platform has exceeded 84.2 percent for key enterprises in the manufacturing industry.
New manufacturing is to connect the commercial Internet with the industrial Internet, and moreover, to render them indistinguishable, according to Hu Qimu, a research fellow of the China Enterprise Confederation, adding that it will be a new manufacturing pattern to apply the Internet thinking in every process and step.
--How to seize new opportunities for new technologies and new services?
Amid a changing environment, enterprises can seize opportunities only by keeping pace with the changes. Sharpening technologies and expanding services have become the powerful weapons for them to gain larger market share in the new era.
Emerging manufacturing technologies include intelligent guidance with the console, precise positioning through optical tracking, and accurate screw placement assisted by mechanical arms.
In the exhibition hall of Beijing Tianzhihang Medical Technology Co., Ltd., orthopedic surgery robots are playing a critical role in enabling precision medical treatment.
Orthopedic surgery demands exceptionally high precision. The assistance by surgical robots can not only help improve the accuracy, shorten the operation duration, but also better utilize the medical resources at grassroots medical institutions.
Xu Jin, General Manager of Tianzhihang, told reporters that as of August, the orthopedic surgical robots developed by the company had completed more than 8,000 operations in over 80 medical institutions across the country.
Technology extends the value chain of manufacturing and is a prerequisite for taking up more market shares. At present, many industries are faced with digital transformations.
It is noted that providing new services is also the choice of many enterprises.
At the just concluded Tiantan International Stroke Conference 2020, the auxiliary diagnosis system for intracranial aneurysms launched by Beijing BioMind Co., Ltd. has dramatically improved the diagnostic accuracy of cerebral aneurysms with the aid of artificial intelligence (AI) technology.
"In the next step, we will cooperate with Beijing Tiantan Hospital on verification and clinical practice, and extend the AI service to more hospitals." said Liang Weimin, Chairman of BioMind.
Engineering equipment enterprises operate, maintain and manage industrial products through big data monitoring, while leading manufacturing enterprises focus on the supply chain to build an industrial platform.
Shifting to the service-oriented model not only becomes the password for some manufacturing enterprises to become bigger and stronger, but also gives the traditional manufacturing industry more vigor.
Not long ago, 15 departments and commissions including the MIIT issued the guidance on further promoting the development of service-oriented manufacturing, which highlights the role of industrial software in empowering development, assigning value and enabling intelligence.
Both new technologies and new services are extensions of the value chain, according to Chen Dapeng, adding that innovation and reform revolving around this will be the biggest opportunity for manufacturers in China in the new era.
--Through concentration or divergence, how to expand value?
Focusing on the main business is a constant truth. "Don't get distracted, and stay focused on our main business." said Xu Jin, General Manager of Tianzhihang when being asked whether to expand the surgical robots to other fields.
Xu added that for a long time to come, the enterprise will continue to focus on the orthopedic field by continuously upgrading the technology and improving the quality step by step.
Concentration is the foundation while divergence is the method. In the eyes of many entrepreneurs, the two concepts harbor profound philosophical principles.
In order to focus on an area, enterprise often need to diverge to many fields, according to Rong Juchuan, founder of the home textile brand Beyond Group, adding that enterprises make efforts to tap into the industrial chain, extend to garment production and live stream over the cloud, to cater to more personalized, quality-oriented and experience-centered consumption demands.
"Digital technology will, to a large extent, facilitate the accurate allocation and efficient connection of information, technology and production capacity, and thus become a powerful weapon for the inclusive development of large, medium and small sized enterprises," said Liu Duo, President of the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology.
Liu said that enterprises should leverage new technologies to consolidate their main business and refrain from giving up their fundamentals to blindly pursue new patterns, which would only lead to homogenization.
At present, the MIIT is launching the nationwide "One Million Enterprises Moving to the Cloud" initiative to encourage different industries to explore their own digital transformation paths.
Next, it will also support the upstream and downstream enterprises from advantageous industries to open access to data and provide more data services for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Enterprises that pursue pragmatic innovation by making good use of tools and methods and remaining firm in their paths and direction are set to win the initiative and grasp the first opportunities under the new manufacturing pattern, said Liu Duo.
(Edited by Jiang Feifan with Xinhua Silk Road, email@example.com)