Logistics World To Undergo AI-Inspired Transformation

DHL envisions a fundamental overhaul in the global supply chain as artificial intelligence enjoys an increasingly strong presence in the industry. The global logistics heavyweight said in a recent report that modern autonomous and data-driven supply chains can bring about levels of optimization that were previously unheard of in just the next few years alone.

DHL has identified a few key trends that will have the biggest impact over the next five years. One of these is robotics and automation. The newest robots will be more flexible, lighter, and easier to program and afford than those of the past. They will take on the valuable role of performing repetitive logistics tasks that can be very physically exhausting to human workers.

In addition, self-driving vehicles are allowing logistics firms to streamline their warehouse operations thanks to autonomous forklifts and other equipment. As self-driving vehicles clear more security and regulatory hurdles and make their way to public roads, the sky is the limit.

Another important trend is machine-human interaction and collaboration. For example, smart glasses have facilitated the process of order picking in logistics, making it hands-free and a lot more accurate. At the same time, 3D printing is opening up new frontiers in design, enabling the hyper-customization of various products.

IOT’s Role Hampered By Security Concerns

The Internet of Things is also expected to push along the evolution of intelligent supply chains, but it is being held back somewhat by security issues such as hacking and security breaches. Nevertheless, DHL estimates that by the year 2020, more than 50 billion different objects will be internet-connected, and this could provide a $1.9 trillion opportunity to the logistics industry.

If the predictions in DHL’s 2016 Logistics Trend Radar prove to be correct, self-thinking supply chains are right around the corner and the entire logistics world is about to change dramatically for the better.