Ericsson’s latest 5G deployment at Nestle may be laying a foundation for the rapid growth of industry 4.0 across Latin America.

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In Latin America, the emergence of IoT and edge computing has made 5G adoption an imperative in almost every facet of new technology. With this emergence comes the need for higher data processing speed, more network reliability, ultra-low latency and huge network capacity. All these requirements are mostly driven by edge computing and 5G networks.

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The Latin America edge computing market is expected to reach $440 million by 2023, with an expected CAGR growth of 31.1 percent. A recent GSMA Intelligence consumer survey forecasts the growing demand for 5G networks in Latin America. The survey points out that the 5G market in Latin America is heating up and consumers are willing to pay extra for their 5G mobile subscription compared with what they pay for their current 4G subscription.

In light of this technology market reality, the region’s first private 5G standalone network architecture, which operates separately from the public mobile network, has been unveiled by a partnership between Ericsson, Nestlé and communication service providers — Claro and Embratel.

This digital transformation will drive more 5G deployment and adoption across South America. In addition, the Ericsson Private 5G network solution is expected to enhance fast data processing, with a network data transfer speed that will be 24 times higher than what 4G provided.

A 5G solution designed to support industry 4.0 technologies

The release of the Ericsson Private 5G solution is expected to support industry 4.0 technologies, all of which require ultra-short response time to run successfully. Furthermore, with reports suggesting a tremendous growth in Latin America’s edge and cloud computing, more data will be generated and consumed by connected devices. As a result, industry 4.0 will need an increase in network capacity to run at full scale.

Although Ericsson is the current name in the news in Latin America’s 5G network market, other 5G operators like América Móvil Mexico, Vivo Brazil and Telecom Argentina are also pushing hard to penetrate the Latin American 5G market.

How this partnership intends to drive 5G adoption in Latin America

Although headquartered in the Swedish capital of Stockholm, Ericsson is a company with a global presence in the networking and telecommunications industry. The Ericsson-Nestlé 5G deployment is a move to revamp Nestlé’s manufacturing environment in Latin America.

In recent years, Nestlé has dug deeper into utilizing emerging technologies such as robotics, automation, artificial intelligence and machine learning to drive their manufacturing. With the Ericsson 5G network in place, Nestlé’s digital ecosystem intends to become even more robust, reliable and comprehensive, enabling new use cases.

From this move, it is possible that other companies looking to automate their manufacturing process with IoT, 5G and edge computing can begin to adopt 5G technology. Emphasizing how this partnership will drive the future of Nestlé, Marcelo Melchior, CEO of Nestlé Brazil, announced that “Nestlé’s national operation will be a reference in an unprecedented project in which it will be able to perceive the benefits of 5G for industry 4.0.”

Talking about how the partnership will stimulate more growth opportunities across Latin America, Nestlé’s Digital Transformation Manager, Gustavo Moura, stated that “5G private networks provide a new reality for the industry. For us, the benefits include changing and simplifying the factory’s physical environment and the ability to connect a large number of devices to the same network in the region.”

5G and the future of industry 4.0 in Latin America

Supported and powered by other technologies such as IoT, edge computing, cloud computing and AI/ML, the future of industry 4.0 in Latin America may not be complete without deploying 5G networks across manufacturing industries. There are high expectations that this launch will be a catalyst, not just for Nestlé but in other manufacturing industries.

In addition, the solution holds great potential to provide scalability and effectively handle high volumes of IoT-connect devices expected to be on the rise in the coming years across the region. As industry 4.0 continues to evolve in Latin America, we may witness more partnerships between more 5G private network providers and businesses.