Logistics 4.0 with Augmented Reality
It is a known fact that warehouses are the inevitable part of the logistics industry. Over the past years, we have seen that warehousing has become more and more significant with the emergence of e-commerce platforms and tight competition within the logistics field. In order to have lightning fast delivery and reduced inventory, warehousing operations should act effectively and efficiently. Though warehousing has the legacy of working in manpower, with the fast actions required it can be error-prone. It is common that companies investing in and researching new technologies, logistics companies are no different. To streamline warehouse workflows and increase supply chain efficiency logistics industry tried different technologies, but it was only Augmented Reality (AR) seems to be auspicious.
What is Augmented Reality (AR)?
Hope you remember the frenzy created by Pokémon Go by dropping elusive monsters into our own home town or other known places? The game seems to be the best example to understand AR easily. Just like the name suggests, AR augments the real world using a screen and camera. In AR a digital image is superimposed into the real world around you.
Augmented Reality (AR) in Logistics
According to the industry experts, AR is the future, already companies have started using smart glasses with Augmented reality. It is predicted that the shipment of smart glasses for the logistics industry will hit $4.4 million by 2022. AR can be successfully applied in Warehouse operations, Transportation optimization and Last-mile delivery.
AR in Warehouse Operations
Warehouse operations are not easy to handle and it is troublesome. According to the financial point of view, warehousing operations accounts for 20% of the total costs. Then what if the warehousing operations are error-prone, it will surely increase total cost by far and adversely affect customer service, right? For large companies warehouses are most probably on different locations, coordinating inventory between is another uphill task. Let’s point out some of the possible issues with manual warehousing operations.
Order collected wrongly: When an order collected wrongly, it requires additional manpower, work time and cost to arrange return and delivery of items.
Labelling issues: Labeling can be missing or mismatching at times, it again increases the possibility of errors. With the implementation of AR, it is expected to cut short the errors and thereby reducing costs of warehouse operations. Pick-by-vision, AR smart glasses are the one is about to help the warehouse employers to reduce possible errors. The possible benefit of using AR in warehousing is listed below.
Speedup order collection: With AR the system selects the optimal route for employees to move within the warehouse. The system also saves personal routes for each employee. The smart glasses will specify in which rack the required item is present. Thus speeds up order collection with the highest accuracy.
Auto bin selection: After picking up the item and confirms the action, the smart glass will specify in which bin the item should be placed. To confirm a product the barcode is incorporated with smart glasses, to confirm other actions we can make use of the voice confirmation system in the smart glass.
Helps monitoring employer performance: With smart glasses, warehouse administrators to track employers during the work time and analyze the overall performance over a period.
The AR smart glasses with pick-by-vision technology freed employees from committing errors, in fact with this technology it is impossible to make mistakes.
Logistics 4.0 with Augmented Reality
There is nothing better than automation to the overall improvement of the logistics industry. Logistics 4.0 or Supply chain management 4.0 is the next big step towards switching to smart operations of warehouses and its connected supply chain. With its latest artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms and AR logistics 4.0 supposed to make the warehousing operations efficient and to reduce all possible errors. If you asking for a definition, logistics 4.0 is something which is going to digitalize the entire process in logistics industry with the help of Internet of Things (IoT), Robots and Augmented Reality (AR). With the evolution of augmented reality, Picking and Sorting, Cargo Loading, Safety Management and Warehouse remote assistances etc are expected to show improvements. When coming to the overall safety and security of warehouses, logistics 4.0 is expected to play a big role. DHL is the one company start to experiment with AR and Logistics 4.0 from 2014, recorded the immense improvement of 46% in performance and thus increased productivity by 16%.
The technologies like AR, AI are about to change the entire process of logistics and supply chain management. In the near future, these technologies will force to have a change in business model in the logistics industry. Those companies will adapt to the latest technological advancements will survive this race and others will have to shut down the business very soon.