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An Ecosystem of Innovation

An Ecosystem of Innovation

In an industry where six months can feel like a lifetime, electronics manufacturers must constantly develop, create, and innovate to maintain a competitive edge and meet consumer demands. Given that, it is absolutely critical for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to stay on top of industry trends.

To help address consumer demand for new gadgets that are smaller, better, faster, and stronger, a new model has been developed -- dubbed the "eco-system approach" -- that will help OEMs speed up the product development lifecycle. This new approach gives OEMs greater control over the product lifecycle while utilizing the creativity of the supply chain that supports their manufacturing suppliers, making them more adept at responding to trends.

One trend this method has already helped address is the production of "infinity edges" via the use of reactive hot melts. Also known as narrow bezels, infinity edges are now nearly ubiquitous in electronics, as consumers have demanded larger screens and thinner casings for their TVs, mobile phones, tablets, etc. -- but without sacrificing durability, performance, or style. By working closely with OEMs, companies like H.B. Fuller have developed hot melts that help enable these desired design features. Because there is a continually shrinking bond area for electronic devices' screens, and therefore less space for assembly components, more and more OEMs are turning to hot melts to create infinity edges.

Reactive hot melts for infinity edges
By working with the supply chain in a collaborative effort via the ecosystem approach rather than in their own functional silos, OEMs, suppliers, and the rest of the supply chain can communicate more effectively, spurring more dramatic innovation at a quickened pace. This advantage can be seen in infinity edges, which have exploded in popularity the last few years and are continually being pushed further out, creating a need for a product that can hold it all together and maintain a sleek and slender design.

Reactive hot melts adhesives are that solution. Able to maintain high bond strength in minute areas, these hot melts are ideal for crafting infinity edges. This ability is crucial as device companies design toward the infinity edge, leaving little space for adhesive application. But since a reactive hot melt bead the size of a human hair has enough strength to carry the weight of a pair of AA batteries, manufacturers have a proven material that provides enhanced strength for a more durable and reliable bond. The resilient nature of hot melts ensure the product's integrity is not compromised with repeated use and handling.

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