Guangzhou Intelligent Equipment & Robot Expo concluded in the city’s Canton Fair Complex on September 25, with the intelligent technology in the manufacturing sector as the main theme.
The four-day exhibition attracted the exhibitors covering all stages in the chain of manufacturing industry. As the mechanical arms moving up and down and the unmanned trolleys running around the venue, a rough picture of "Made in China" in the future could be visualized.
"I have seen many factories facing over 10 percent of yearly labor cost increase, forcing them use machine to take the place of man," said Guo Kongkuai (郭孔快), chairman of Real-Time Data (速威), a provider of manufacturing execution system based in Guangzhou.
The system is to manage all steps in the manufacturing process – from warehouse to production line, in order to boost efficiency and reduce labor cost. Using the version of system developed by Real-Time Data under the same manpower, a Guangzhou-based home appliance manufacturer had its annual output doubled from 300 million yuan. The expense was 2 million yuan.
However, Mr. Guo was not totally agree with the idea of "unmanned factory." "There are a lot of small and medium factories in China, receiving small orders of different products," he said. "Those factories require flexibility of production, which the unmanned factories can’t offer."
The cost of building such an automatic management system is also Mr. Guo’s concern, as his target users are the small and medium factories in China. "The cost of our system rages from 300,000 yuan to 3 million yuan, while the cost of a similar system with a foreign developer will be tenfold."