ABB and IBM are entering into a strategic partnership that brings together ABB’s digital offering ABB Ability with IBM’s supercomputer Watson in a bid to develop solutions in industry, transport, infrastructure or utilities.
“This powerful combination marks truly the next level of industrial technology,” ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer said in a statement. Devices will no longer simply gather data, but will also analyse it and use it to optimise processes.
For example, the two partners will leverage Watson’s artificial intelligence to find and remedy defects using real-time production images that are captured through an ABB system and then analysed using IBM Watson IoT for manufacturing. The solution will also detect problems not visible to the human eye, enabling faster processes and increased quality control.
In another example, ABB and IBM will use their respective technologies to help utilities operate and maintain smart grids in a more efficient manner. Watson is able to predict supply patterns in electricity generation and demand from weather data.
This latest collaboration marks ABB’s second major partnership with an IT service provider in the area of digitalisation. Last year, the Zurich-based company entered into a partnership with the software giant Microsoft to develop digital solutions on an integrated cloud platform.