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Posts Tagged ‘Dassault Systems’

Experience Alters High Tech Definition

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

By John Blyler, Chief Content Officer

The high tech experience is no longer limited to one device type as capital and complexity barrier breeches allow innovation in new markets.

What is the future of semiconductor high technology development and creation? To find out, System Design Engineering talked with Olivier Ribet, Vice President of High Tech Industry for Dassault Systemes. What follows is a portion of that conversation. – JB

(Left to Right) Manuel REI, Senior Manager and Olivier Ribet, VP of the High Tech Industry for Dassault Systemes are interviewed by John Blyler, CCO at Extension Media.

Blyler: The semiconductor industry is going through a period of significant change in both the supply chain structure but also in how innovation is created. All of this seems to be affecting the identity of the industry. How do you define high tech?

Ribet: From our perspective, the high tech supply chain encompass everyone from designers and IP integrators to OEMs for smart phones, tablets and the like to manufacturing execution systems (MESs). [Editor’s Note: Managing the manufacturing process is the domain of computerized manufacturing execution systems (MESs). MESs handle and track the execution of the products being built. In doing so, they provide visibility into how the current conditions on the plant floor can be optimized to improve production.]

Many of the manufacturing players are being forced to go further up stream in the value chain. Traditionally, they were focused on manufacturing. But today, more and more are involved with the conception, design and creation of semiconductor devices.

Blyler: Would you include any of the software and service companies like Google or Oracle in this definition?

Ribet: Yes – These companies are clearly becoming important players in the high tech space. One reason is that many of these software and service providers are now a source of hardware! Further, companies like Google, Amazon, Microsoft and others are delivering a significant component of the high tech experience in the form of cloud services and related applications.

It is all about the end-to-end experience. Today’s high tech products like the Nokia Lumia or Apple iPhone provide the primary user experience. But an increasingly substantial part of that experience is expanding beyond the phone. For example, the experience might start with the smart phone but then continue on to the PC or TV screen in your house or even your car. Volvo just launched a new car where an iPad like interface replaces the traditional dashboard experience of the car.

It is all about the end-to-end experience.

Blyler: How does these expanding level of interaction affect our perception of high tech?

Ribet: The borders in the high tech space that were previously well defined are starting to blur. This is why the question of defining what is meant by “high-tech” is so important. Today, high tech is everywhere and the definition is not always so clear. One example comes from the rapid growth of wearable medical health devices like the Fit Bit. Most of these devices exist on their own but at some point interface with a smart phone or PC. So again, the experience starts with the health monitor but quickly moves to other user devices.

Did you know that Nissan recently announced a new car that comes with a wrist band to monitor your vital signs of the driver.  This should help prevent accidents from drivers falling asleep at the wheel. Drivers who aren’t asleep – but are stopped at a light – can flip the wrist device slightly to see vital information related to the condition of their driving. The experience of high tech products is no longer contained completely within the initial device that you are use

Blyler: The key is that these devices are all connected and the experience is moving beyond a single device. One would hope that this connectivity will lead to new innovations.

Ribet: It is spurring innovation all over the place. Consider Nest, the company started by former Apple employees. They decided to create a new way of managing the temperature in your home. The initial experience started on the Thermostat but quickly move to the smart phone.

Another example is a French company called Netatmo.  They make a small, cubical tower-like device that is really a miniature weather station. Also, it can be used to detect has pollen, pollution and ozone in the air.  The tower collects information but doesn’t light up until a smart phone is nearby, i.e., doesn’t transmit until an appropriate device is nearby.

Here, you can have two experiences. One is the weather station taking the temperature while the other is a thermostat that allows the user to adjust the temperature. Do you see where all of that is going? Right now you have Experience A and Experience B, both of them are being activated through a smart phone. Now let’s put some intelligence between these two experience. If temperature is below X, then the Nest thermostat will have to do something. You start to see all of these things coming to fruition because there is a convergence of many factors.

Blyler: How do these interactions affect the way you view high-tech?

Ribet: We (Dassault Systemes) think about high tech in these two dimensions. First, you need to serve the needs of the people creating the end-to-end, high tech experiences. Secondly, you need to help and enable other industries who want to grow their own experience in high tech, e.g., people from the automotive and transportation industries, medical sciences, financial services, energy systems.

We’ve found that once you enable high tech scenarios, people become more creative. It unleashes a new wave of innovation once people realize what is possible. So far, this kind of innovation in the high tech sector was heavily dependent on lots of capital. Also, the complexity of these system were a barrier to entry for smaller companies and start-ups.

That barrier is shrinking. For example, many companies can go online with a new high tech idea in which they ask users to confirm the validity of their idea as well as ask for money to create the product. The crowd funding approach addresses the cost barrier which, in turn, allows for more innovation at the sensor, chip, board and network level (as we just discussed). This is a fundamental change in the way all of us think about high tech.

Blyler: Thank you.


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