SolidWorks has a long history of delivering innovative solutions. By listening to its community needs, the design software is able to deliver tools that make developing great products easier—be it single component, incredibly complex equipment or even entire production lines. This year, Dassault Systèmes, launched its 18th annual conference at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, USA, where SolidWorks 2016 was released.
With a customer base of 5750 in India, and dedicated to 3D design and engineering community globally, SolidWorks World 2016 witnessed a footfall of around 6000 people, along with 40 hours of networking opportunities.
Making business model stronger
Keynote presentations from the greatest of designers, innovators and visionaries were delivered at the technology driven conference. Today, their dynamism has pushed technological, business and sustainability boundaries far beyond what many thought possible.
Day 1 began with general sessions, where Paolo Bassi, CEO, SolidWorks, addressed the first session. “This is the best year for SolidWorks because the community is growing stronger and bigger,” he exclaimed. He further said, “Communities partner with us for a better innovation that includes creativity and execution. So much so that additive knowledge of other innovators comes to our innovation. For us, the ecosystem comprises of people, application and infrastructure. SolidWorks acts as an innovative platform for making a business model stronger.”
Highlighting that $1 billion user revenue was achieved by the company, Bernard Charles, President, Dassault Systèmes, announced that the company has been investing massively for SolidWorks. “We will provide the best solution for architecture, design & construction. We are changing the economic model of the current landscapes,” he shared.
In today’s age of experience, the world of design has become more social, and collaboration remains critical. SolidWorks, this year, brought together more than 5000 engineers and designers from across the globe to network, learn, share and discover the latest in SolidWorks 3D applications & engineering technologies that help millions of users make great designs happen.
As per Monica Menghini, CSO, Dassault Systèmes, design is a vision. While sharing insights on the technology breakthrough adoption with the use of SolidWorks, she averred, “Today, the economical boost generates from experience. As such, consumers buy experience. The knowledge-base of experience doesn’t only cater to the product; in fact, it ranges across the entire customer journey.”
Moving ahead, Bassi hosted a session inclining with future product and technology strategies designed for desktop & cloud, and collaboration with the strong user community. He also revealed SolidWorksPCB, the new printed circuit board design software from Altium. In innovating with the best-inclass SolidWorks ecosystem, Kishore Boyalakuntla, Senior Director, Product Portfolio Management & Solidworks brand UX leader, in his presentation, provided a sneak-peek into the products created around the world. He introduced xdrive, which has built-in AM features, and has an objective to expand the design paradise. “This is a new online SolidWorks design product that works in the web browser for desktop & mobile devices,” he added.
The next session was presented by Yves Behar, a design entrepreneur. While explaining the current landscape on design and technology, he touched upon the futuristic vision, which covered aspects like distraction hell vs invisible interface; robots vs humans; virtual reality vs augmented reality; healthcare vs augmented reality; healthcare vs 24/7 personal care; first world problem vs technology for all and single mind design vs multi-disciplinary environments.
Ecosystem of design
Today’s consumers are increasingly demanding more personalized products tailored to their specific needs. Based on this, Day 2 began with a presentation by Suchit Jain, Vice President — Strategy & Business Development, Dassault Systèmes. As per Jain, personalisation adds a level of complexity to the design process. “However, innovative new tools have been introduced that make mass customisation easier for customers,” he added. Also, attendees were given a preview of such a technology with presentations from David Friedfield, CEO, ClearVision Optical and Igal Kaptsan, Vice President—Product Management, SolidWorks Make, on innovative solution to personalise eyewear. Jain revealed SolidWorks apps for kids too.
Day 3 witnessed Boyalakuntla explaining the two ecosystems—manufacturing and IoT. While speaking on model-based manufacturing—MBD, he said that SolidworksMBD brings design & manufacturing on the same platform. “It’s an integrated drawingless manufacturing solution for SolidWorks that helps companies define, organize and publish 3D Product Manufacturing Information (PMI), including 3D model data in industry standard file formats such as eDrawings® and 3D PDF. He also spoke on SolidWorks Inspection and showcased SureFlap, an innovative SolidWorks-designed and xively-connected product to safeguard pets.
Moving ahead, Louis Feinstein, Senior Product Manager, SolidWorks Electrical, introduced SolidWorksPCB Connector, synchronised with mechanical & electronic design that has the best-in-class design and power to meet the parameters of design today. Since Additive Manufacturing is poised to grow in both, usage and downstream impact, manufacturers in a wide variety of industries, are actively piloting & implementing 3D printing today. Touching upon this, he further discussed the integration inside SolidWorks and 3D printers developed by Korea-based Sindoh, the first 2D printer company with massive production capabilities to expand into 3D printing business. “SolidWorks believes simplifying the complexity of connected devices. In this context, Sindoh has become a SolidWorks partner and developed an integration, so that we can not only design, but also print in our SolidWorks platform,” he added.
Catering to the Indian market
According to experts, the challenges to 3D manufacturing come out of subtractive manufacturing. On this, Peter J Rucinski, Director—Product Portfolio Management, SolidWorks Desktop Products, shared that big companies, today, are heavily investing on 3D printing. Speaking on the adoption of this technology in the Indian market, he said, “Asian countries are strong on the mechanical side, but it still has to buck up on the software side. When it comes to India, schools should implement the economic and cost-effective machines from a very initial stage so that the technology can be well-adapted to them.”
As per Jain, the ‘Make in India’ initiative is great for SolidWorks since it implements more manufacturing activities. “In India, business is generated more from the service industries, rather than manufacturing. We have developed a CAD training program in India. Our team there, is in the public-private partnership, which has an involvement of the government and academia. However, the design aspect needs to be paid attention in India,” he opined.
Further, explaining the growth strategy in India, he shared that in terms of Solidworks, India has a 20 - 25% growth. “We have become more flexible for adopting 3D tools in India. We also are growing our subscription to achieve a better rate of adoption. We will work towards the ‘Make in India’ initiative. We have already taken up the Fablab initiative in India,” he added.
Sharing views on the Indian market, PM Ravikumar, Sales Director, 3DS Professional Channel, India, said, “In India, around 12% growth drives down from the business & finance sector, but the manufacturing sector is still struggling. For the ‘Make in India’ programme, we have plans of investment, more on electronic clusters. SolidWorks has been in use in the Indian market. Today, SoildWorks has around 1.5 lakh licenses involved in India, and the Indian revenue market to SolidWorks is 1.5 and 2.5%. Ather Energy, initiated by IIT Chennai students have built India’s first premium electric smart scooter with the integration of SoildWorks.”
Previewing SolidWorks 2017
While wrapping up the event, a brief on the next release was presented by the Product Introduction Team, which displayed that the next version will ease visualisation of geometries, deliver great capability in section view and will have transparent section views. Further, it will enable treehouse drawing imports, where the treehouse will automatically import associated drawings; have shaded sketch contours, where sketch contours will be shaded for clarity & easier manipulation; will have advanced hole wizard, where new functionality will create multi-step holes. The next edition of Solidworks will be hosted in 2017 at Los Angeles, USA.