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Google Cloud unveils digital twin tools for supply chain applications

Retailers, healthcare firms, and manufacturers targeted as potential customers

Ben Wodecki

September 17, 2021

2 Min Read
Google's Supply Chain Twin

Retailers, healthcare firms, and manufacturers targeted as potential customers

Google Cloud has launched Supply Chain Twin — a tool allowing companies to build a digital twin of their physical supply chains.

Supply Chain Twin works by aggregating enterprise data from disparate sources to get a more complete view of suppliers, inventories, and other information.

Simultaneously, the company launched Supply Chain Pulse, which, when combined with Supply Chain Twin, can create dashboards and alert uses to critical issues like potential disruptions.

"Siloed and incomplete data is limiting the visibility companies have into their supply chains," said Hans Thalbauer, managing director of supply chain and logistics solutions at Google Cloud.

"The Supply Chain Twin enables customers to gain deeper insights into their operations, helping them optimize supply chain functions—from sourcing and planning to distribution and logistics."

Digitizing demand

Digital twins are gaining legs in terms of uses and deployments.

Matterport, a software firm that creates digital twins of properties for real estate, went public in July, following a successful $640m merger with special-purpose acquisition company Gores Holdings VI.

Meanwhile, tech giant Nvidia is set to launch a virtual environment platform that can digitally replicate machines and tools used in real-world facilities. Omniverse was announced as an enterprise service back in April and can also be used to create extensive 3D environments that enable production teams to collaborate.

Google Cloud has now gotten in on the act, creating a system that can be used in combination with its Workspace software tool.

Supply Chain Twin and Pulse provide real time analytics that outline operational metrics. Users can set alerts so that when certain situations arise, they’re instantly notified.

The system includes AI-driven algorithms that can recommend tactical responses to certain events, flag more complex issues, and simulate the impact of hypothetical situations.

French automaker Renault was among the first firms to deploy the Supply Chain Twin.

It is using the tools to manage stock, improve forecasting, and to "eventually optimize our fulfillment, “said Jean-François Salles, global VP of supply chain at Renault.

Google Cloud solution architects Ashwin Sridhar and Chris Loux demoed the new platform earlier this week, showing various use cases for manufacturers.

“System integration partners such as Deloitte, Pluto7, and TCS, can help customers integrate the Supply Chain Twin and relevant datasets into their existing infrastructure,” the company added.

Supply Chain Twin and Twin Pulse are currently only available in preview, with interested companies instructed to contact Google Cloud for pricing information.

About the Author(s)

Ben Wodecki

Jr. Editor

Ben Wodecki is the Jr. Editor of AI Business, covering a wide range of AI content. Ben joined the team in March 2021 as assistant editor and was promoted to Jr. Editor. He has written for The New Statesman, Intellectual Property Magazine, and The Telegraph India, among others. He holds an MSc in Digital Journalism from Middlesex University.

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