LiveWorx 2020 Recap: SaaS: The Architecture for the New Normal

Written By: Alexandra Puig
  • 6/18/2020
  • Read Time : 5 min
Augmented Reality Improving Aerospace Maintenance and Service

The impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic is undeniable. Nearly every aspect of the workforce has been impacted in ways that have forced companies to rethink their products, processes, and people. Organizations have struggled to complete in-person service calls, employees have lost the face-to-face interactions with co-workers, and much more.

Enter what is now being referred to as a post-COVID “new normal” -- the remote workforce. Entire companies are going online to maintain business continuity.

Amid the dismal outlook, LiveWorx 2020 keynote speakers Jon Hirschtick, PTC EVP, President of SaaS, and Mike Campbell, PTC EVP, General Manager of Augmented Reality Products took viewers to “cloud nine” with a peak into the future of the industrial enterprise, shedding light on why Software as a Service (SaaS) provides organizations with a foundation on which to build and launch their ideal “new normal”.

The Cloud Grows Up, Sheds Its “Nice-to-Have” Status

To remain competitive in the industrial landscape, Hirschtick and Campbell argued that it is no longer an option to have a cloud-based platform; it is now a necessity. But why should a company select SaaS over another comparable cloud-based platform? Its architecture, Hirschtick and Campbell said.

Citing research from Deloitte, SaaS is not only widely accepted by many chief information officers (CIOs), it is also credited with boosting employee engagement and overall productivity. Bolstered by research from IDG, Campbell underscores the benefits of SaaS implementations by highlighting 84% of CIOs have cut application costs with SaaS, with 55% understanding that with cloud as their catalyst, a SaaS investment is of the utmost importance.

“Atlas” Exchanges Earth for the Cloud and its SaaS Platform

Go to website. Enter log-in credentials. Get latest version of every single asset and file. That’s the benefit of SaaS, and the driver for Hirschtick when he set out to reform the customer experience by bringing Onshape to the cloud.

Building upon PTC"s acquisition and development of the Onshape platform, Hirschtick and Campbell outlined the beginnings of PTC’s Atlas platform, a powerful set of core services that can be used to power many applications, including Onshape. Hirschtick and Campbell addressed how Atlas enables PTC to build and offer customers better SaaS applications faster. These applications will work together more smoothly for customers – using common tools where appropriate – for example, for user provisioning, for version control, etc. – enabling ease of data sharing.

Kickstarting new versions of PTC’s technology on Atlas, Hirschtick highlighted Vuforia, and PTC's generative design software, implemented in April’s Creo 7.0 CAD software release. On Atlas, customers have the ability to take advantage of collaboration tools beyond their wildest dreams backed by analytics that unlock access to unprecedented insight on asset data and workflow.

Vuforia Augments Its Reality with Move to Atlas Platform

Hirschtick and Campbell didn't stop there. In the latter half of the keynote, they outlined Atlas as the next frontier for the Vuforia AR software. With nearly 58% of the current manufacturing workforce nearing eligibility for retirement, Campbell set the stage, emphasizing the desire for industrial enterprises to transfer institutional knowledge to a newer, and younger workforce.

Traditional methods of empowering them - paper documentation, training classes, over-the-shoulder mentoring and shadowing, and face-to-face troubleshooting – are no longer viable. In normal times, these approaches are inefficient, but in a world of working from home, travel bans, and social distancing, they simply don’t work at all.

How are they embracing this new reality? With AR. Where do enterprises take an AR product to ensure workforce productivity and safety, cost reductions, and less downtime? That’s right – to the cloud!

Starting with Vuforia Expert Capture, Campbell walked through how the content captured with digital eyewear can be enhanced with a SaaS-based editor and published for a variety of mediums.

The Future is Bright, and Brighter with SaaS

While LiveWorx 2020 is the beginning of SaaS within PTC, it is surely not the last time the technology will be mentioned, said Hirschtick and Campbell. The transformative potential of SaaS is undeniable, and in a post-COVID world, necessary to pivoting towards a “new normal”.

  • Augmented Reality
  • SaaS
  • Corporate Update

About the Author

Alexandra Puig

Alexandra Puig is a corporate communications specialist based in PTC’s Boston headquarters. Prior to joining PTC, she practiced public relations at a leading law firm and life sciences organization. Alexandra earned her B.A. in Political Science from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.