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The market shares of Ethernet at packaging machines from 2005 to 2012

How Industrial Ethernet has been developing from 2005 to 2012 divided into real time Ethernet and TCP/IP. Which five topics the packaging machine- builders have been employing again and again during this period.

Increasing market shares of Ethernet at packaging machines

May 9th, 2011 - The development of Ethernet at packaging machines shows three stages.

  • Stagnating use between 2005 and 2008. During this period real time Ethernet advanced step by step at the expense of the exclusive use of TCP/IP.
  • Erratic spreading of Ethernet at packaging machines with real time Ethernet as engine from 2008 to 2010.
  • Up to 2012 the packaging machine- builders are only planning a moderate expansion of Ethernet. That concerns primarily real time Ethernet. A certain saturation of the Ethernet use will become apparent.


In the years 2005, 2008 and 2010 Quest TechnoMarketing investigated the use of Ethernet in the machinery industry and of course at packaging machines as well.


Out of these three surveys we address the following five factors playing again and again a major role according to the evaluation of the packaging machine-builders being partly differently treated by the companies. The year in parentheses refers to the production year of the respective study.

Market shares of Ethernet at packaging machines 2005 - 2012

Market shares of Ethernet and real time Ethernet  at packaging machines 2005 - 2012.
Source: Market surveys by Quest TechnoMarketing about the market shares of Ethernet and real time Ethernet at packaging machines.

„All devices we need must be Ethernet-capable“

This packaging machine-builder continues in the year 2010:

  • „As long as this is not the case we will not use it (Ethernet); this concerns above all servo drives and temperature controllers. If are offered we will turn to Ethernet already earlier.“ (2010)


Packaging machine-builders are referring again and again to missing uniformity:

  • „Not all components are available with Ethernet/ProfiNet interfaces yet (for example S7-CPU317T).“ (2010)
  • „Basically it is important that one can get a unified structure with Ethernet, which is not available at the required extent today. One would like to offer Ethernet still much more often, but at present the distributed I/Os, FC and gateway are still missing.“ (2008)
  • „Devices that are still missing are, beside sensors, above all also FC and field devices.“ (2008)

„The plurality of protocols is to criticize“

The often missing uniformity is connected with the existence of different real time Ethernet protocols.

  • „The plurality of protocols is to be criticized. There should be a complete external router from one to the other protocol, no matter whether to ProfiNet, EtherCat or Ethernet IP.“ (2010)
  • „We did not decide yet on a certain Ethernet protocol. The big question is, which will have future? The systems must run for 20 years, so we must be able to ensure the users in regard to guarantee and service that the devices will also still be available after 5 to 10 years. That is why a standard would be so important.“ (2005)


Others adjust themselves to the plurality of the protocols.

  • „We would have wished for a standardized Ethernet protocol. After this will not be reality, we will not “use Ethernet in a forced manner”, Ethernet is for us definitely no field bus substitute. We will always use several different bus systems. We do not dream about Ethernet as the substitution for all field buses.“ (2005)


Again different packaging machine-builders elude that plurality of protocols by using integrated solutions:

  • „Only one bus system at the machine, unified principle…Everything must go with the concept of B&R.“ (2008)

„…turning immediately to Ethernet, if the safety engineering were integrable“

Here the demand is made that Ethernet should have a higher degree of integration.

  • „One would turn immediately to Ethernet, if the safety engineering were integrable.“ (2008)


Beside Safety Ethernet packaging machine-builders demand also among other things for a safe access to the web server via Internet:

  • "Which does not make us content yet, is the safety engineering with Industrial Ethernet in regard to firewall etc. Also the use of Ethernet wireless is not satisfactorily released yet.“ (2005)

„RJ45 plug problem!!!“

This statement from the year 2008 points to the demand for industrial-suited plug connectors.

  • „RJ45 connectors are unsuitable in the machinery industry!“ (2008)

„Currently the use of Ethernet is not necessary“

Finally packaging machines are concerned, for which Ethernet does not offer noticeable benefits.

  • „The use is not necessary for us at present in our opinion. The speed of the field buses (Profibus) is at present acceptable for our machines. Sensors are connected directly to distributed I/O so that the field bus is only used for coupling the PLC and the distributed modules.“ (2008)
  • „Too high expenditure in relation to the benefit in regard to the small series machines built by us, field bus systems are not used in principle…“ (2010)
  • „All machines are run with CANopen. This concerns a compact unit, for which Ethernet would not bring benefits. Only the interlinking upward to other machines will receive an Ethernet interface. (2005)
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