Interview: MANISH MISRA, chief innovation officer, Panasonic India : ‘Customers want IoT & AI-enabled solutions’

Making use of new-age technologies such as IoT, AI, ML, cloud, big-data, analytics, to name a few, we are helping solve customer pain-points.

With Miraie Profactory we have expanded our portfolio to enable smart manufacturing across industries.

Recently, Japanese conglomerate Panasonic introduced Miraie Profactory platform, an Industrial IoT/Smart Factory solution developed indigenously at the company’s India Innovation Centre. “India Innovation Centre (IIC) was established with an objective to make Panasonic India as an innovation hub,” says Manish Misra, chief innovation officer, Panasonic India. “Miraie Profactory is a one-stop solution for deployment, service and business intelligence needs. It empowers manufacturers to design paperless digitised shop floors, drive machine effectiveness, maximise plant operations,” he tells Sudhir Chowdhary in a recent interview. Excerpts:

Panasonic’s Innovation Centre started in 2017. How has the journey been and what innovations have you worked on?
India Innovation Centre (IIC) was established with the objective to make Panasonic India an innovation hub. IIC has been creating new business opportunities for Panasonic and providing technological solutions to our consumers, in  line with our larger vision to create a better life and a better world. Making use of new-age technologies such as IoT, AI, ML, cloud, big-data, analytics, to name a few, we are helping solve customer pain-points.

For instance, our Miraie enabled connected home appliances empowers everyday lives of our consumers with comfort, convenience and seamless connectivity helping them multi-task. Similarly, we have introduced SignEdge solutions that are intelligent display solutions that helps bring in extra advertisement revenues for screen owners. The recent most addition is the Miraie Profactory—an Industrial IoT solution for manufacturing industry which will help drive digitisation and adoption of Smart Factory.

Tell us more about Miraie. How did Miraie as a concept germinate?
Miraie is our Connected Living Platform enabled with IoT and AI technologies. ‘Mirai’ meaning ‘future’ and ‘ie’ meaning ‘home’ in Japanese, the term literally means connected spaces. Consumers are now looking towards IoT and AI enabled solutions to enhance quality of life through connected ecosystems—as per our research over 75% are looking for specific requirements related to ease of use, safety, monitoring misuse, service reminders, personalised usage pattern. And Miraie caters to the evolving needs of the consumers. It uses new-age technologies such as IoT, cloud computing, mobile technologies, data analytics and AI/ML to connect all devices and services with one interface to provide a comfortable and convenient experience.

It recognises usage patterns and suggests optimal modes extending the best comfort for users.
For example, the connected AC and fan can talk to each other and give best temperature and air flow experience working in tandem. Miraie features the widest range of connected products available under one platform comprising ACs, refrigerator, washing machine, Wi-Fi fan, Smart Door phones, Smart digital switches and Smart Wi-Fi controller plugs and switches, etc.

Miraie Profactory is a solution for enterprises. How will it add value to the manufacturing ecosystem?
Miraie Profactory is an extension from residential IoT to Industrial IoT. It will enable Indian manufacturers to digitise their factory operations thus allowing enterprises to realise the true potential of Industry 4.0. Miraie Profactory uses new-age technologies such as cloud, IoT, analytics, mobile app, etc., to manage end-to-end operations on the shop floor resulting in enhanced overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), better availability, better performance and better quality. It also has capabilities to identify issues and reduce production downtime by suggesting bottlenecks, thereby creating economies of scale. The solution is currently available in four variants and is customisable from basic to advance depending on the requirement with value added features. In a nutshell, Miraie Profactory will help build factories of the future.

What is the outlook for India Innovation Centre for the next five years?
Miraie will continue to be the key focus for Innovation Centre. Today, most of our home appliances and electrical devices are on Miraie platform providing consumers with a smart home experience. With Miraie Profactory we have expanded our portfolio to enable smart manufacturing across industries. In the next phase, we have made inroads in our Spatial Solutions business covering residential and commercial spaces.

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