upFront.eZine #1,076: PTC's 2x more-expensive cloudCAD is (up to) ten years away
The Business of CAD | 30 November 2020
I admire Apple and PTC for making daring moves. In the case of Apple, it's switching its desktop CPUs from desktop-optimized Intel chips to smartphone-optimized ones defined by ARM. For PTC, it is in moving its CAD software 100% to the cloud. In both cases, I think they will stumble, yet I look forward to watching the progress.
During last month's conference call with financial analysts, PTC ceo Jim Heppelmann explained the company's roadmap when it comes to cloudCAD software.
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Jim Heppelmann: Let me kind of just paint the highest level picture. We think the industry is going to SaaS [software as a service]. And with Onshape we’re leading the charge. But we’d like to bring our customer base that’s on Creo [CAD] and Windchill [PLM] along for the ride.
So we’re saying, ‘What if we developed using the Atlas kernel, if you will, or architecture of Onshape--. What if we developed versions of Creo and Windchill that kind of acted a lot like Onshape in terms of being true multi-tenant, multi-user SaaS?’
But at the same time, we’re compatible, so that you could do a lift-and-shift of an on-premise deployment into the SaaS cloud?
Now that will take us a couple of years to build, to be frank, because if you’re talking about compatibility then you need pin-for-pin feature capability, right?
We’re not talking about building a new product with limited functionality. We’re really talking about full-on versions of Creo and Windchill so that you could lift [them out from] the production deployment, shift it into the SaaS cloud, and never miss a beat.
Why it’s interesting [to financial analysts] is because that lift-and-shift typically doubles the ARR [average recurring revenues, i.e. subscription income]. Because a subscription on-premise seat generally doubles in value when it becomes a subscription SaaS seat, because [the customer saves on the cost of] the servers, and the administration, and the upgrades, and lots of different things
So, I think you should model that [financially] in the back half of a five-year window, and well beyond, by the way. I think it’s something that would probably run for -- I don’t know -- it could be a decade. It will take us a while to get it going.
So I’m not counting on anything there in 2021, and probably not even anything in 2022. We've got a lot of work to do.
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For the full transcript, see https://seekingalpha.com/article/4382341-ptc-inc-ptc-ceo-jim-heppelmann-on-q4-2020-results-earnings-call-transcript
And in Other News
Design++ from Design Power combines engineering, configuration, change management, and geometry. A new link between Design++ and Tekla creates 3D building geometry in Tekla Structures: automatically-generated building models in Tekla are the result of Design++ driving Tekla. Users have access to other Tekla capabilities, such as 2D drawings and BOMs [bills of material] reports.
Viewing the video tells you how Design++ works better than I can describe it here: designpower.com/design%2B%2B/demos/building-TeklaStructures.mp4
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Epson adds 600dpi scanners to its line of large-format inkjet plotters, which will output scans to USB-attached drives, network folders, emails, as well as printing them.
The Epson SureColor C-size T3170M ($2,545; shown above) ships in January; the faster and larger D-size T5170M ($4,995) will ship more slowly in Q2 2021. Print out the details from epson.com/pro-imaging-large-format-printers.
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The ETIM [electrical technical information model] classification system is a neutral standard for product data in a manufacturer-independent, media-neutral format that supports levels of geometric detail (LOG). Cadenas is adding ETIM-defined electrical BIM libraries to its PARTcommunity portal as of March, 2021. Learn more about ETIM at etim-international.com/.
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M4 v4 from Cad-Schroer generates ISO piping isometrics from models made by PTC Creo Piping and PCF [piping component file] files automatically, fully-dimensioned with parts lists, cut-length lists, bend tables, and more.
Request a trial version from cad-schroer.com/products/m4-iso/isometrics-for-ptc-creo-piping/
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After Coreform acquired exclusive commercial rights to Trelis from Sandia National Labs, it renamed it Coreform Cubit. The software pre-processes 3D models in advance of FEA [finite element analysis] and CFD [computational fluid dynamics]. Version 2020.2 adds spline-based elements, meshing collapse, parallel tetrahedral meshing with up to eight CPU cores, and more. Cubit Learn is free.
The video at coreform.com/products/coreform-cubit explains how finger-less aliens (see above) in a galaxy far away originally developed Trelis.
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Here are some of the posts that appeared recently on my WorldCAD Access blog:
You can subscribe to the WorldCAD Access blog’s RSS feed through Feed Burner at feeds.feedburner.com/WorldcadAccess.
Letters to the Editor
You wrote, “PTC CEO James Hepplemann noted that Onshape ... landed over 700 competitive displacements, the majority coming from SolidWorks. Dassault Systemes has 49,800 companies using Solidworks.”
There are nearly 450,000 companies globally using SolidWorks actually.
- Sam Scholes, senior account manager
The editor replies: Thanks for fixing the number. I had found my number somewhere on the Internet, as I wanted to put the 700-number into context.
Mr Scholes responds: You’re welcome. Losing 700 customers isn’t much in the context of 450,000 SolidWorks customers.
The editor replies: And who knows if they were displaced. It could be 700 trying it out.
Mr Scholes responds: I would suspect that is more common. People love new technology and I suspect many current SolidWorks customers have tried Onshape. But that doesn't necessarily mean they switched. When PTC acquired Onshape they had only 5,000 customers according to the press release. The adoption rate of Onshape is incredibly low.
Re: Bricsys Digital Summit 2020, Cont'd
I noticed you mentioned that Eric Keyser didnآ´t show up at Bricsys Summit. He is no longer CEO of Bricsys, since May of this year. Thank you for your newsletters, I am a regular reader of them.
- Ricardo Cruz
I read your upFront.eZine newsletter today and noticed you pointed out that Erik has not made any appearance. Erik resigned as CEO on May 8 this year. I thought you knew.
I was very surprised that a company of the size of Hexagon would not make any public announcement nor communication about the transition. Six months later, there is still no CEO replacing him, as far as I know.
- D. C.
The editor replies: Thank you for letting me know, as I had not heard that.
Re: Brian Duguid's letter on the "gap" and shared parameters
From my perspective as a fabricator, the letter made perfect sense. Critical to the process of designing and building is the application of relevant knowledge. Notably, this example utilized a technician from the steel fabricator from the start.
No currently available technology is close to being able to bridge the knowledge gap between designers and fabricators. In my experience it is very rare for people without direct experience in fabrication and building to grasp all the complexity and required knowledge.
Re: Spatial 3D Insider Summit
Like you, when I saw the required download, install, sign-in, avatar, etc. sequence, I just said to myself, “No thanks.” Curious what the attendance was.
- Jeffrey Rowe
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