Digital Transformation Transforms Industrial Automation Hardware Market

Digital Transformation Transforms Industrial Automation Hardware Market
Digital Transformation Transforms Industrial Automation Hardware Market

The global market for automation hardware is undergoing a significant change as manufacturers adopt automation solutions with more complex architectures, and software-based PLCs are an increasingly “notable vector of transformation” for the PLC market, according to a new report from global technology intelligence firm ABI Research.

Makers of next-generation human machine interfaces (HMIs), industrial personal computers (IPCs) and programmable logic controllers (PLCs) are adapting to the growing digital transformation within manufacturing. They are attempting to identify best-of-breed offerings, leverage the increasing openness of products and integrate these assets into a comprehensive overarching solution. ABI Research predicts each market will see strong growth over the next ten years with the total market forecast to increase from a current value of US$38.7 billion in 2023 to US$64 billion in 2033.

The PLC market is the largest segment with sales projected to reach US$30 billion by 2033. “PLC market growth is driven by new manufacturing requirements, such as for smart connected products, EVs and battery manufacturing,” said James Prestwood, industrial and manufacturing industry analyst.

“New production techniques and a “digital-first” mindset are also encouraging new automation solutions like software-based PLCs,” said Prestwood. The trend toward software-based PLCs is best reflected in Siemens’ announcement of it SIMATIC S7-1500V, he said, a virtual PLC completely independent of hardware that is downloaded and integrated directly into a manufacturer’s IT environment.

Siemens, Mitsubishi Electric, Rockwell Automation, Emerson and ABB account for about 42% of total industrial automation hardware market share, said ABI Research. The is also characterized by other prevalent players such as Omron, Phoenix Contact, Honeywell, Bosch Rexroth and Beckhoff.  In its report, ABI identifies large PLCs (controllers with more than 1,024 input/outputs (I/Os) as having the most robust growth compared to other PLC classes (micro, small and medium). “As manufacturers continue to adopt automation solutions with complex architectures, which increasingly demand powerful PLC assets, large PLC controllers are the ideal solution, rather than using multiple smaller PLCs to achieve similar results,” Prestwood concluded.

These findings are from ABI Research’s Industrial Automation Hardware Innovation: PLCs, IPCs and HMIs application analysis and market data reports, part of the company’s Industrial and Manufacturing Technologies research service.

About The Author

Renee Bassett is chief editor for InTech magazine and, and publications contributing editor for ISA. Bassett is an experienced writer, editor and consultant for industrial automation, engineering, information technology and infrastructure topics. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and English from Indiana University, Bloomington, and is based in Nashville.

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