Autodesk Launches Cloud-Based Alternative for Product Lifecycle Management

Feb. 29, 2012
Autodesk Inc. on Feb. 29, 2012 announced the immediate availability of Autodesk PLM 360. The company states this "next-generation cloud-based alternative provides a powerful, affordable and easy-to-implement solution at a fraction of the cost of traditional product lifecycle management (PLM) systems."

Autodesk (www.autodesk.com) says it is the first cloud-based PLM solution focused on business applications beyond engineering and bill of material management. As a result, employees in a range of roles—from planning and product development to quality and compliance to service and more—can better access product and project-related information that helps them continuously improve the products they design and manufacture.

“Our customers deserve modern technology to help solve the needs of their increasingly complex and global businesses,” said Robert “Buzz” Kross, senior vice president, Design, Lifecycle and Simulation at Autodesk. “Autodesk PLM 360’s simple, flexible, cloud-based approach will radically improve the ability for companies to gain the full benefits of PLM, helping them to become more competitive and grow their business.”
“We’ve found Autodesk PLM 360 to be a welcome expansion of our Digital Prototyping workflow,” said Rob Ferber, CEO at Electron Vault, a clean-tech energy-storage provider. “Given the high costs and expertise associated with traditional PLM, we just didn’t want to go there until now. Autodesk’s accessibility, rapid deployment and ease of use reduce the complexity of managing PLM processes across our global teams.”
Franke Foodservice Systems Inc., a division of Switzerland-based global manufacturer Franke Artemis Group, which employs around 10,500 staff worldwide and is established in over 40 countries, has adopted Autodesk PLM 360 to improve its product management, enhancing collaboration through product conception, realization, deployment and use. “No two restaurant customers are identical, and we have many staff in the field doing surveys of customer sites to customize equipment for a new menu item or coffee system,” said Duane Brown, manager, Product Data and CAD Operations, Franke Foodservice Systems. “Having a global, cloud-based application to track every step and all our major product milestones with instant sharing of all field and engineering notes in a secure application is incredible.”
No-Programming Approach
The product adopts a "modern" look-and-feel and uses configuration rather than programming to set up the system. It contains "dozens" of pre-installed apps to automate business processes across the lifecycle. With intuitive drag-and-drop functionality, users can tailor apps or build their own to meet specific needs and without having to purchase additional modules.
It is a multi-tenant cloud application. The application is constantly updated by Autodesk eliminating painful upgrades to multiple users. Autodesk PLM 360 also features integration and interoperability to on-premise systems including Autodesk Vault product data management (PDM) software. Vault enables workgroups to organize, manage and track their engineering CAD data, manufacturing bills-of material and change processes from a centralized location.
The Autodesk PLM 360 subscription model simplifies purchasing. Full function access for the first three professional users is free, with each additional user priced at US$75 per month on an annual contract basis.

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