Manufacturers turn to AI-enabled video to boost productivity

Published: 19-Feb-2024

New research from Hanwha Vision has found that more than one third (37%) of European manufacturers are turning to artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled video to solve their business challenges

This exceeds the number who favour established industrial technologies such as automation and robotics (32%) and places AI video alongside 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT) and other technologies as key means of overcoming hurdles.

A further one in two (52%) manufacturers plan to use AI-enabled video to notify operators of plant and equipment failure, whereas more than 45% plan to deploy it to identify blockages or queued items on production lines, as well as spot manufacturing errors in finished goods leaving production lines.

AI-enabled video combines networked cameras with algorithms to automatically detect and classify objects and their specific attributes.

Using software built into the camera, it can alert users when specific behaviours are identified — such as a warehouse operator not wearing safety gear or an unexpected object on a production line.

Pread Um (Suk Bong), Product and Marketing Director at Hanwha Vision Europe, said: “This year is poised to be the one when AI-enabled video breaks through to mainstream use. Thanks to the rising awareness of AI and proven business successes using AI-enabled video, more manufacturers are turning to the technology to solve challenges beyond security.”

“Video holds huge potential in terms of streamlining manufacturing operations, providing valuable data to inform factory strategy and planning, and helping to secure people and assets. It’s encouraging to see so many manufacturers recognising this and actively planning to adopt AI-enabled video for these uses.”

To better understand attitudes towards AI-enabled video in the post-ChatGPT era, Hanwha Vision conducted research among 1000 individuals in organisations across five European countries (UK, Netherlands, Italy, Germany and France).

Operations and security leaders were questioned about the technologies they will adopt to address a range of strategic business challenges, such as finding new efficiencies, introducing new processes and controlling costs.

This more “intelligent” use of video marks a dramatic shift from the security function that CCTV, as it was formerly known, has historically fulfilled. Indeed, the traditional role of video cameras to “maintain a safe and secure environment” is cited by far fewer respondents in Hanwha Vision’s research (26%).

Although the research found that AI-enabled video technology is finding favour with a wide business audience, it also unearthed potential barriers to adoption by manufacturers.

Chief among these was the imagined need for training in the technology, cited by 40% of respondents overall. Yet, investing in intuitive video systems that work “out-of-the-box” can vastly reduce the amount of training and technical knowledge required by operators to use AI-enabled video. 

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Another potential barrier to adoption lies, perhaps unsurprisingly, in concerns about cybersecurity. Not unique to video technology, this might reflect wider concerns about data security and the potential for networked devices to be compromised.

Working with responsible manufacturers that have a longstanding commitment to cybersecurity best practices and are compliant with the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will help address such concerns. 

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