Angela Merkel inaugurating Sweden Co-Lab together with the Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven.
For the visitor, the fair includes 25 halls full of technology, organized by themes such as the robot hall and research and education hall.
This year’s partner country was Sweden and in the Co-lab Swedish Pavilion area over 100 Swedish companies, research institutes, academia, and start-ups had made joint forces to demonstrate what Sweden can offer. The Swedish Prince Carl-Philip visited the fair and can here be seen testing virtual reality in a factory based environment.
From the impression, three aspects stood out for this year’s fair.
Platforms is the new black and the big players are now entering the scene. At the fair, one could start in the corner of Hall 9 visiting the huge booth of Siemens with their IoT platform MindSphere, continuing further to hall 8 to see the Microsoft booth presenting Azure, and then ending up in the Amazon booth (more looking like a house than a traditional booth) in hall 7. Along this pathe were platforms and IT providers as long you could see. Another interesting aspect was their collaboration with users, populating their booth with companies demonstrating how they use their services. This also made it clear that there is no single provider in this game of winning the customer and they are more or less intertwined with each other, e.g., the Siemens MindSphere platform is relying on the AWS services. The presence from the platforms and IT providers states the transformation that is happening in the manufacturing area; it is becoming digitalized and connected.
2. Man and machine interaction
Hall 17 was the place for robots and it almost more felt like an amusement park – an amusement park of robots. Bosch had a stage where the robot and AGVs performed a show demonstrating how they can work together with each other and with humans, FANUC robot was lifting a car and UR presented an installation of robots moving synchronized. The most impressive show however, was the interaction between the Swedish artist Fredrik "Benke" Rydman and an ABB industrial robot. It was indeed a performance and showed the grace when human and machine move and work together.
3. The atmosphere
Hannover Fair is the largest industry fair and after the first visit, it can be concluded that it really meets the expectations of providing the state of the art within in industry. The organization around the fair is impressive and it is not every day one has the possibility to walk between booths hosted by the largest technology providers for industry. It is for sure an opportunity to learn more and exchange ideas with its open atmosphere. Besides the interesting conversations between visitors and exhibitors, there is also an extensive agenda of presentations and seminars on themes like Smart manufacturing, 5G, AI and much more that are hosted by companies and organizations exhibiting at the fair. It is an ideal opportunity to learn more and gain new contacts.
This sums up this year’s Hannover Fair where we had the opportunity to be part of the partner country area, arranged by Business Sweden. With the immense attention from media and visitors, we can hope it strengthens even more the focus on digitalization and smart manufacturing in Sweden. Looking forward to be part of the Hannover fair for many years to come.
Images: Business Sweden
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