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What’s Been The Impact of Covid-19 On The 4th Industrial Revolution?

By | Bernard Marr | Internationally best-selling author, keynote speaker, futurist, and strategic business & technology advisor

Obviously, the coronavirus has had a devastating impact on our world. The transformative effects of COVID-19 are immense, but they aren’t all negative. When faced with the reality of everything being remote from work to entertainment to education to connecting with friends and more, the technologies that propel the 4th Industrial Revolution offered solutions to continue some normality in business and life. As more companies relied on these technologies to continue operations, things that held digital transformation back in the past were challenged. As a result, as Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, said, “We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months.” COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of 4th Industrial Revolution technologies as people and companies relied on cloud computing, artificial intelligence, the speed of 5G network, big data, and more.

Adoption of Industry 4.0 Technologies a Matter of Survival

In what felt like an overnight transition, since such dramatic changes in business usually take months, if not years, companies pivoted to remote operations in response to stay-at-home orders. It was a matter of survival to innovate and try new ways of working and serving customers and stakeholders that, in the past, were not adopted for one reason or another. At the time of the coronavirus outbreak, while many people and companies were reticent about going all-in with Industry 4.0 technologies, luckily, the capacity and framework of those technologies were in place even if not fully perfected. Imagine living our 2020 reality in 1980—no connected devices, no ability to video conference, no artificial intelligence to support efforts.

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