In an interaction with Industry Outlook, Sekaran Letchumanan, Vice President – Operations, Flex India, shares his views on the current technology trends in electronics manufacturing.
How do you see the current evolution of electronics manufacturing industry in India? What are the major factors driving its growth?
The electronics industry
is the backbone of development across many sectors in our country including agriculture, healthcare and more and is one of the key sectors identified by the Government of India under its “Make in India” and ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ initiative. We believe India has the capability to become a leader in the electronics manufacturing industry.
The Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme that was announced by the government is an excellent move towards transforming India into a manufacturing hub. We believe that this is going to create huge opportunities for Indian businesses that are present in electronics manufacturing and it will create many job opportunities too. One of the obvious areas with potential is components and industrial goods manufacturing.
What are the most pressing challenges faced by electronics manufacturers in terms of new technology adoption? How can they address those challenges?
Some of the most obvious challenges that electronics manufacturers face in the adoption of new technologies are:
• How does one integrate these emerging technologies into the legacy systems
• The daunting cost and time factor
• Challenges associated with power, physical security and minimal latency when data centers are scattered around the world
• Understanding which technology is the right fit for that enterprise
• Requirement for cross industry expertise that will deliver Industry 4.0
The answer is to partner with an enterprise like Flex that has gained expertise from our experience around the globe and across sectors. Flex helps companies’ customize their technology adoption according to their requirement and our best-in-class talent across technology and manufacturing make Industry 4.0 possible, with the least amount of hassle.
IoT is being adopted aggressively in electronics manufacturing but there are concerns related to data protection and integration with legacy machines. How can manufacturers overcome these challenges?
Today data protection has become a central pillar in an enterprises’ digital transformation journey. Without it, any organization would lose their competitive edge. IoT and Industry 4.0 connected with legacy machines do collect massive amounts of data, however, a clear security roadmap which takes into consideration all the resources, infrastructure, and end points along the manufacturing chain, can mitigate risks to a large extent.
Data protection is no longer a low-cost viable plan, but it is mission critical for digital systems. Many methodologies such as multi- level authentication along with biometrics, Zero Trust and Micro-segmentation can eliminate human error which is one of the biggest vectors for business sensitive data infiltration. In addition, emerging technologies that use AI and Machine Learning will play a huge role in maintaining a resilient cybersecurity perimeter. Applications that use them can help in anomaly detection, treat detection and intelligence, data discovery, and identify attacks on a system, among other things.