How the Internet of Things is Driving Growth in Furniture Manufacturing?
The Internet of Things (IOT) is largely still in the conceptual stage of growth, much like cloud computing once was, but it’s slowly becoming a real driving force in certain industries. Furniture manufacturing in particular is seeing the early effects of change. While furniture manufacturing has historically been a slow industry to change or adapt new technology, this trend is changing for the better. Discover how furniture manufacturing companies and their subcontractors alike can both benefit from the growth created by the IOT’s effect on the industry.
Integration into CNC Machines and Other Furniture Manufacturing Equipment
Computer numerical control (CNC) routers, sanders, lathes, and other machinery revolutionized the furniture manufacturing industry when it first emerged. Now IOT integration aims to make these computer guided tools even more accurate, easy to control, and intuitive. While CNC equipment used for furniture manufacturing always featured some kind of feedback mechanism, today’s IOT enabled furniture manufacturing equipment is highly responsive and interactive.
Operators can upload and edit designs with less work than ever, get in-depth reports when something goes wrong, and track efficiency and maintenance needs of an entire factory worth of furniture manufacturing equipment. Adding augmented reality displays to view woodworking and metalworking processes in progress and virtual reality modeling technology will only further help the furniture manufacturing industry grow.
Addition of Sensors and Connectivity in All Types of Furniture Manufacturing Processes
Not only are IOT technologies changing furniture manufacturing, they’re also changing what kind of features are necessary in the products themselves. Consumers want sofas that track their heart rate and ovens that can order food, and furniture manufacturing companies are striving to keep up with these changing desires.
Subcontractors who design and implement smart systems integrating sensors and smart hubs are now being invited into parts of the furniture manufacturing process they’ve never participated in before. While early projections only assumed that appliances would be so highly integrated into the IOT, now even basic furnishings like shelving units and dining room chairs are being fitted with sensors and wireless adapters during the furniture manufacturing process to help them fit into a larger and more intelligent whole house system.
Waste Reduction Through Demand-Based Furniture Manufacturing
Embracing the IOT is also helping furniture manufacturing companies embrace the lean business philosophy. Thanks to the IOT’s ability to highlight hidden information and quantify everyday experiences, it’s easier than ever for furniture manufacturing companies to trim up unnecessary furniture manufacturing spending and costs to reduce waste. Furniture manufacturing companies can compare different manufacturing techniques, discover which product lines aren’t selling as well, or just determine when it’s time to switch suppliers.
Long-Term Maintenance Options Drive Adjustments in Furniture Manufacturing
As IOT connected devices spread and proliferate throughout both consumer and business environments, the focus on maintenance and repair over routine replacement will continue to grow. IOT integration helps furniture manufacturing companies of all kinds achieve a longer product lifespan because the connectivity of each product allows it to notify users and owners of malfunctions and the need for attention. This is true even for soft furnishings, in which a sofa reaching the end of its lifespan could recommend local reupholstery services or a new set of springs before the old ones wear out. Furniture manufacturing companies that rely on a short use and replacement cycle may need to adjust to a new model that focus on servicing products instead of just replacing them.
Connection to Other Services Distinct from Furniture Manufacturing
Finally, the demand for IOT furniture necessitates that furniture manufacturing companies will need to network with other service providers from very distinct industries. For example, there is already a furniture manufacturing brand that sells kitchen products that connect with local food delivery companies through IOT integration. Furniture manufacturing companies who secure the best contracts now will be able to produce unusual and useful furnishings that expand the consumer’s idea of what a TV stand or refrigerator can do.
IOT integration is projected to grow rapidly within the furniture manufacturing industry over the next few years. If you are a furniture manufacturing company and don’t want to get left in the dark, consider hiring an IOT designer or consultant from the European Subcontracting Network for help. Register your company as a Furniture Manufacturing Subcontractor or a Furniture Manufacturer General Contractor/Buyer.