How will PLM applications change when they move to a cloud?

How will PLM applications change when they move to a cloud?

Clouds have become a very important trend lately. Earlier this week, I was reading a McKinsey discussion about document presentation – <Clearing the air on cloud Computing>. Also, I had the chance to write a few posts on this subject a couple of months ago. I’d like to get back to this topic again and discuss its potential implication on the PLM/PDM/CAD business. I’d like to group it into hardware, software, application, and innovation.


Impact in the area of hardware infrastructure will allow you to provide better solutions from the environmental standpoint. Additional impact will be on data management and data retention programs. The biggest benefit and impact is that cloud data centers will allow you to manage an infrastructure that you weren’t able to manage previously. It will make a global PLM solution possible and decrease cost. It will allow many small manufacturers to have solutions they weren’t able to build before.

From the perspective of software platforms, today’s PLM vendors and future PLM solutions providers will be able to use the capabilities of existing and new cloud services. This is a new type of software that focuses on virtualization and common application services like databases and services. A great benefit of these platforms is the ability to scale up when needed. This is can be greatly used by simulation and computation products, as well as serve peak performance needs.

Here is a landscape of most popular today’s platforms:


Hardware and Software Platforms will open a new space for the development of service applications. These applications will be specifically designed with the “cloud in mind”. They will focus on online presence, transparent data availability and multiple device access. Additional benefits will be a dramatic cost reduction for PLM applications as a result of cloud hardware/software bundled platforms.

Last, but not least, is Innovation in PLM. Today’s on-premise environment sets a relatively high bar for newcomers in developing new and innovative applications in this space. I think that the combined effect of hardware, software and application development will impact the future PLM application landscape. This be largely beneficial for manufacturing companies around the globe during the current economic situation.


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