it as a complete product development system, connecting the software development domain to the rest of the product development enterprise.
To support this broader view of product development, PTC rolled out a new framework for organizing its growing number of solutions. At the highest level, it talks about enterprise challenges around the need to share data and create processes that cross multiple silos. Windchill, serving as the repository or single source for all product-related material; new closed-loop quality processes based on the former Relex quality management module, but now an integrated part of the Windchill backbone; and emerging social media functionality delivered by an integrated capability called SocialLink, are the core technologies that will address those challenges.
For its traditional audience of engineers, PTC served up a host of new deliverables. Among the highlights were details on the formal release-to-market of Creo 1.0 and a nine new AnyRole Apps (more on that later). There is also new functionality that will result from the integration of Integrity not just with Windchill, but to Mathcad and other system modeling tools in order to provide better solutions for early system design and product definition. “A single view of the early BOM (bill of materials) needs to be shared broadly through the team,” noted PTC Executive Vice President of Product Development Brian Shepherd, in his presentation. “It’s too important to leave in a spreadsheet–it’s critical to do this within the product development system.”
Manufacturing and the supply chain and solutions for service and support are the two other groups PTC is targeting with its new cross-enterprise product development message. New and enhanced capabilities in the areas of product analytics (in both Windchill and Creo), sandbox capabilities for early collaboration with suppliers and a nifty peak at a mobile version of Windchill running on the iPad (which got a huge round of applause) were some of the ways PTC is delivering solutions to address pain points in this area. Its solutions for the service organization and what it now calls capabilities for creating a service bill of materials (SBOM) are being built on technologies coming from its Arbortext division.
Taken individually, the new products and positioning are pretty comprehensive and far ranging. But the really interesting part of PTC’s new and improved message is that it really isn’t about individual, monolithic products or solutions, but really about a mix and match set of capabilities that integrate to solve real business problems for users across a range of roles–not just engineers. Now that there are real shipping products, customers will be the ultimate judge as to whether PTC’s delivery is good as its strategy and positioning.