The “preemptive support service” leans on AI and ML to improve efficiency at a Foxconn factory in Hungary
Ericsson and Vodafone on Tuesday announced a service continuity solution for private networks aimed at improving manufacturing and industrial efficiency. It’s described as a “preemptive support service” that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to improve efficiency for industrial manufacturing. The companies highlighted the new solution’s deployment at a Foxconn factory in Komárom, Hungary.
Network outages at factories like Foxconn’s will bring production to a halt, said the companies. Service continuity for private networks proactively identifies potential sources of performance degradation using AI and ML.
“Corrective actions are then taken by Vodafone locally together with Ericsson’s centralized team to avert such an occurrence, ensuring uptimes that are better than in traditional telecom networks,” said Ericsson.
Specifically for Foxconn, the issue is keeping their computer manufacturing assembly lines in tiptop shape. Ericsson identified the specific challenges addressed in the Hungarian factory.
“Foxconn relies on non-fixed 5G-based test cars, on which newly manufactured PCs are tested before packaging at their plant in Hungary. To ensure that the private network connecting these test cars is as reliable as possible, Vodafone and Ericsson have jointly developed and deployed the custom-built Service Continuity for private networks support and technical assistance for enterprises that ensures smooth network operations,” said Ericsson.
The companies said that the service continuity solution can be tailored to the needs of other Vodafone enterprise customers. Ericsson bills it as combining big data analytics with human network expertise.
“Centralized Ericsson teams can execute or provide actionable recommendations developed from the company’s expertise and machine learning models, which are fully aligned with Foxconn’s business priorities,” said Ericsson. “This allows Foxconn to maintain optimal network performance without unplanned interruptions and avoid revenue loss through prediction, early detection, and prevention of potential incidents. The solution will also help reduce operations and maintenance workload and improve return on capital investments through greater utilization of installed equipment.”
Elsewhere, Ericsson and Vodafone Germany are working to outfit the country with 5G Standalone (SA) services as quickly as possible. The two firms announced 5G Standalone (SA) services in Munich, Germany in July. Vodafone said it will initially use the existing mobile communications infrastructure to a large extent and, wherever possible, will deploy 5G and 5G SA antennas at 121 existing mobile communications sites in Munich. Currently, 49 locations in the Munich area are already equipped with 5G technology, while a further 21 5G construction projects to be implemented locally by mid-2023. Vodafone Germany has taken an aggressive posture for 5G SA deployment. In March, the company announced that its 5G SA service had already reached 10 million customers.