by Radhika Nallayam

IoT will Redefine the Global Manufacturing Industry: PTC

Jul 02, 20143 mins
Email ClientsEnterprise ApplicationsIndustry

Almost all manufacturers will be using Internet of Things (IoT) applications by 2020, leading to a potential economic impact of as much as $2.3 trillion for the global manufacturing industry alone, says Robert Kocis, Senior Divisional VP of Asia Pacific Sales and Distribution, at PTC.

PTC acquired ThingWorx, an Internet of Things company. What kind of new capabilities does this acquisition provide PTC?

ThingWorx is a natural extension to our portfolio, especially on the services side. When we got in to SLM (service lifecycle management) a few years ago, the Internet of Things (IoT) had already started to take shape. We saw our customers starting new initiates around IOT and that’s primarily what led us to the acquisition.

According to McKinsey, there were 1 billion connected devices for 5 billion people in 2010. It is estimated that by 2020, there will be at least 50 billion connected devices to the Internet.

Monitoring those connected devices and providing real-time data and feedback will require huge number of apps. Currently, most of the apps available are out of structure. The Thingworx acquisition allows us to bring order to how manufactures build these applications.

McKinsey projects that 80 to 100 percent of all manufacturers will be using IoT applications by 2020, leading to potential economic impact of as much as $2.3 trillion for the global manufacturing industry alone.

How does M2M and connected devices change service life cycle management?

Think about a mining company that has an equipment in a field. Such machines usually have in-built sensors in them. With IOT, that company can build an application in the dashboard for the service department to receive real-time data from the sensors.

With that, they can stop failures before they occur by doing predictive maintenance. Immediate expenses related to product failure is a very big cost to manufacturers. So if we can predict a failure beforehand, it can save manufacturers and distributors a lot of money. This connection—between the product and the service department—is a huge opportunity for us. IOT and M2M enables us to do exactly the same.

So SLM, which is the second half of a product life cycle, is enhanced significantly with IOT. What does it do to the first half—the point till manufacturing?

End-to-end connectivity is certainly the long-term goal of IOT. But in the short-term, it’s more about connecting multiple devices and looking for cost savings. There is a lot of easy cost savings for manufacturers around the service area. But in the long run, the quality of the products can also be improved with the help of M2M and IOT.

The moment you talk about IoT and M2M, you’re addressing a vast space with billions of devices connected to the internet. What would be PTC’s focus area?

We will bring value to all platforms but we have deep expertise in manufacturing. So we are going to bring value to companies involved in manufacturing that want to connect their equipment and their products using applications.

What’s your competition doing in this space?

Competition will become more spread out with IOT. But we haven’t faced much competition as such in the SLM space. Siemens for example did not really follow us into the SLM space. They are still focused on the manufacturing shop floors. The IoT space is new and wide open.

Does IoT give you the chance to enter new markets?

We shall do that, but with a separate distributional model. We are going to keep our core distributional model focused on manufacturing because that’s where the expertise lies. We shall build a separate distributional model for non- manufacturing industries. Combining everything is not the right choice for our existing salesforce.