Ericsson has announced that its first fully-automated smart factory will become operational in early 2020.

The firm says that the creation of this factory – which will be located in the US – is in-line with its plans for a more flexible global supply chain.

The factory will produce Ericsson’s Advanced Antenna System radios which will be used to boost network capacity, and rural coverage for 4G and 5G mobile network deployments.

The factory will also produce 5G radios for urban areas.

“We continue to focus on working closely with our customers and supporting them in the buildout of 5G globally and in North America. With today’s announcement, we conclude months of preparations and can move into execution also in the U.S,” vice president and head of networks at Ericsson, Fredrik Jejdling, said in a media statement.

“In addition, we are digitalising our entire global production landscape, including establishing this factory in the U.S. With 5G connectivity we’re accelerating Industry 4.0, enabling automated factories for the future,” Jejdling added.

Ericsson is still in discussions with state and local authorities in the US as to the location of the factory.

While the factory will be fully-automated, Ericsson says that approximately 100 people will be employed at the facility. We assume this will be to insure that operations run smoothly rather than humans getting involved in production.

The hope with this factory is that it will help Ericsson work closely with customers in its European, Asian and American operations.