Bosch board member Struth: Realizing economies of scale in how we grow our knowledge base

Implementation of 50 projects and use cases

  • Bosch is a leading supplier and leading user of connected industry
  • Bosch pools its own expertise and benefits from a broad-based footing
  • The real Industry 4.0 revolution is in business models

Hannover – “At Bosch, we’re not just making connected industry a reality, it already is – and its future is bright around the world.” These were the words of Bosch board of management member Dr. Werner Struth at the CeBIT Global Conference. The technology and services company is relying on its own expertise and on its broad-based footing to implement connected industry (“Industry 4.0”). “We have all the competencies we need to turn connected industry into reality, both for ourselves and for our customers and partners,” Struth continued. Bosch is not only a leading supplier but also a leading user of these technologies. The company already offers software and hardware solutions for connected industry , and has successfully introduced aspects of connected industry at its own plants, including standardized data exchange between companies .

Exploratory approach and broad-based footing
“Worldwide, we’re currently running some 50 pilot projects to put beneficial use cases for connected industry to the test,” said Struth, whose responsibilities as a member of the Bosch board of management include manufacturing systems. The company’s approach is both centralized and decentralized: it gives the various projects attached to different Bosch units a great deal of freedom in how the functional specifics of each use case are defined. Meanwhile, it sets up a central organizational unit to act as global coordinator for the various initiatives, in particular as regards a unified software and hardware architecture. “Working in this way allows us to realize economies of scale in how we grow our knowledge base,” Struth continued. “The exploratory approach we’re taking leads to new, inspiring, and innovative solutions.” He went on to say that from the user’s point of view it is important for technical standards to be defined that allow easy configuration of systems, and that it is also essential to give due weight to security considerations.

With more than 260 manufacturing sites worldwide, Bosch has extensive manufacturing know-how, stretching from the manufacturing of millions of automotive components to the customized manufacturing of packaging machinery. This know-how is complemented by the software expertise of the company’s own software and systems unit, Bosch Software Innovations.

The real revolution is in business models
Struth pointed out that the current phase is centered on two key tasks. One of them is to develop further enablers for connected industry, for instance data recording and transmission using RFID (radio-frequency identification) tags or web-enabled sensors , along with data mining. The other task is to develop beneficial use cases and new business models. “In what people are calling the fourth industrial revolution, the real revolution will be in new business models. And those who stand to gain from connected industry are those who can develop user-oriented solutions,” Struth stressed.

Additional information:
Background: Connected industry / Industry 4.0
Practical example: Virtual representation of supply chains
The internet of things – what is it?
The commercial potential of the internet of things
Sensors – the sensory organs of the internet of things

Tags: Vernetzte Produktion“ Sagte, Vernetzte Produktion, Member, Knowledge

Bosch Software Innovations, the Bosch Group's software and systems house, designs, develops, and operates innovative software and system solutions that help our customers around the world both in the Internet of Things (IoT) and in the traditional enterprise environment. We place particular focus on the topics of mobility, energy, manufacturing, and building. Our IoT platform - the Bosch IoT Suite - allows the interaction of devices, users, companies and partners on a centralized platform. This enables the development of innovative and future-oriented solutions for new business models.

With some 600 associates worldwide, Bosch Software Innovations has locations in Germany (Berlin, Immenstaad, and Stuttgart), Singapore, China (Shanghai), and the United States (Chicago).

More information can be found at,,

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 410,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2018). The company generated sales of 78.5 billion euros in 2018. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. As a leading IoT company, Bosch offers innovative solutions for smart homes, smart cities, connected mobility, and connected manufacturing. It uses its expertise in sensor technology, software, and services, as well as its own IoT cloud, to offer its customers connected, cross-domain solutions from a single source. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to deliver innovations for a connected life. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.” The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 460 subsidiary and regional companies in over 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing, engineering, and sales network covers nearly every country in the world. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. At nearly 130 locations across the globe, Bosch employs some 68,700 associates in research and development.

Additional information is available online at,,,

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