Where to host my cloud CAD and PLM?

Where to host my cloud CAD and PLM?


Cloud adoption is growing. There is almost a synergy about cloud and PLM. All PLM vendors are signaling about leveraging various pieces of cloud technologies in their business. Now, the time is coming for CAD. Last few months were sparked by multiple debates around future of cloud CAD technologies. Onshape was a resonating factor of these discussions. However, other companies such as Autodesk and Dassault Systems/Solidworks are also demonstrating their commitments for future cloud development.

Cloud is a pain relief for your company IT. You shouldn’t worry about servers, communication infrastructure and other IT resources. However, as you can imagine, cloud infrastructure is located on the ground and in many situations you want to know where is it located, how is that protected and secured. Users can be happy to have all CAD documents to be located in a “single cloud place” together with the last version of the software. However, you want to know how reliable is this single place and who is taking care of cloud operation.

Few months ago, I shared some of thoughts and references about pubic cloud and the way it will influence large manufacturing companies. Navigate to these two post to refresh your memories – PLM vendors, large manufacturers and public cloud and Is public cloud reshaping PLM landscape? Time to re-check…

My attention caught another article – Predicting The Future Of Cloud Service Providers by Louis Columbus. The article provides a a very interesting set of information about where future cloud investment will go and what cloud service providers are going to support it. Here is an interesting snippet of data:

7% of marketing departments will have 60% or more of their applications on a cloud platform in two years. When asked which Value-Added Reseller (VAR) is most likely to win their enterprises’ business for a significant hosting project, the majority said IBM IBM +0.46% (18%) followed by Microsoft MSFT -0.43% (11%), Amazon (8%) and Dell (7%). Database (57%), e-mail (54%) and business applications (ERP, CRM & industry-specific apps) (49%) are the three leading application hosting investments enterprises will be making in the next two years.

The following chart can give some insight on priority of investments:


As you can see, business applications, virtual desktop hosting and productivity tools are in the top part of the list. The following chart can demonstrate some hosting preferences between large providers.


Manufacturing companies will have to take critical decisions about their cloud strategy. Most of them are using technology and applications that will have a difficulties to move into cloud as a services. The question how to balance between existing authoring and productivtiy tools and new SaaS applications is the most interesting.

What is my conclusion? Engineering and manufacturing companies won’t be able to abandon the existing ship and magically move from existing set of application into a future cloud world. It will be a journey, which will involve existing software vendors, newcomers and new SaaS application, cloud service providers and service companies. How to pickup a right partners? This is a note to CEOs, CIO, IT infrastructure managers and many others. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net



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