The Future is Here

By: Roee Badash

Innovation in the world of international shipping has been accelerating over the years, transforming the industry with new technologies and methods. Here are some of the prominent innovations that, in my opinion, will shape the future of international shipping.

Autonomous Ships:

Autonomous ships represent a game-changer in the international shipping industry, promising to revolutionize cargo transport. Using advanced sensors, machine learning, and artificial intelligence, these ships can navigate the seas without human intervention. The technology has already been tested by several companies, and in January of last year, a Japanese container ship, the “Soliil,” became the first large-scale vessel to navigate without human intervention. The 220-meter ship anchored and detached automatically, maneuvered, reversed, and directed itself along a 240-kilometer route in the Sea of Japan – tasks that were challenging even for skilled human operators. Autonomous ships are expected to reduce operating costs, enhance safety, and improve efficiency.

Blockchain Technology:

Blockchain technology has the potential to transform the shipping industry. Currently used in various industries such as banking, healthcare, and logistics, blockchain rapidly replaces manual paper-based systems with efficient digital processes. It provides systematic operations, saving time and money. In simple terms, it’s a public digital ledger. This ledger tracks all transactions and real-time asset movements. By reducing administrative costs, streamlining processes, and improving security, blockchain can create secure and tamper-resistant documentation for each shipment in the supply chain.


Drones are redefining the delivery and logistics industries. They have the potential to redefine the “last mile” of delivery, a costly and inefficient aspect known to e-commerce, often preventing retailers from offering same-day delivery. Drones are the future for short distances. They are more efficient than humans for certain tasks, such as package delivery. Drones can provide faster delivery than what humans can achieve. Drones have an average failure rate of only 0.001%. In comparison to human drivers, human error is costly both in terms of money and loss of life. A study by the Federal Aviation Administration found that over the last 10 years, there were 2.5 times more fatal transportation accidents involving human errors compared to accidents involving drones or unmanned aircraft systems.

3D Printing:

3D printing has the potential to revolutionize the shipping industry by reducing the need for inventory storage and transportation. With 3D printing, manufacturers can produce goods on demand, reducing delivery times and transportation costs. This technology can also help reduce waste and improve sustainability.

Big Data Analytics:

Big Data analytics is transforming the industry by providing real-time data analysis, predictive models, and optimization. By analyzing data from various sources, including weather forecasts, shipping routes, and cargo tracking, companies can make informed decisions and optimize their operations for maximum efficiency.

In conclusion, innovation is driving the shipping industry towards a more efficient, sustainable, and technologically advanced future. With the adoption of new technologies and practices, the industry is poised to overcome its current challenges and thrive in the coming years.

What do you think the future holds for the world of international shipping?

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