3D CAD market relatively untapped, most users still on 2D
Pinning hopes on its recently-launched SolidWorks 2015
PARIS-based software company Dassault Systèmes SA sees plenty of growth opportunity for its newly-released SolidWorks 2015, saying that the market for 3D CAD (computer-aided design) software remains largely untapped in Malaysia.
According to the Asia Pacific South senior director Sharon Toh, the bulk of CAD users in the country are still using 2D versions.
“Based on our data on the total CAD market size, we believe those using 3D are way below 50% [of the market]. This means the space for 3D CAD is still pretty much untapped,” she told a media briefing in Kuala Lumpur recently.
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According to MarketsandMarkets, the computer graphics market will grow from US$23.33 billion in 2014 to US$32.68 billion in 2019 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.97%.
In a report, the research company said North America will comprise the lion’s share of computer graphics market, followed by Asia Pacific and Europe. Asia Pacific will however experience the highest growth rate, at a CAGR of 10.7%.
The computer graphics market includes software like CAD/CAM (computer-aided design/ manufacturing), visualisation/ simulation, digital video, imaging and modelling/ animation. It also includes services like consulting, training, support and integration in the above areas.
In a separate report, online CAD magazine Architosh, citing market reports by TechNavio, said that the global CAD market is expected to grow to US$8.2 billion in 2016, representing a CAGR of 8.6% between 2012 and 2016.
3D printing a catalyst
Besides users converting from 2D to 3D CAD, Toh believes that there are other potential growth areas, with one being the emergence of 3D printing.
“3D printing is another catalyst for more people to design products. In the past, it could be quite expensive for a person to make a mould or prototype,” she said, noting that 3D printing has brought down the cost.
Other areas Dassault Systèmes is looking at include startups, small and medium enterprises which have yet to embrace any form of design software, and more.
“In the past, a person who wanted to design and develop a new product needed large capital or a plant. Today, you don't need big capital – you can [create innovative products], and there are many manufacturers that can make the products for you,” Toh said.
New SolidWorks 2015
Toh (pic), who is based in Singapore, was in Kuala Lumpur to unveil SolidWorks 2015, the latest version of its 3D CAD software.
“The enhancements and improvements were mainly a result of customer feedback,” she said. “In fact, more than 90% of the functionality in SolidWorks 2015 has been directly requested by customers.”
Toh said the new version focuses “on design, not modelling,” reducing the number of geometry creation steps a user has to go through.
SolidWorks 2015 also allows users to gain access to cloud-based capabilities and a wider range of choices for improving productivity and work processes, lowering operating cost, according to Dassault Systèmes.
“We have the My.SolidWorks platform which is designed and developed to help make our users become more productive,” said Toh.
“Essentially, My.SolidWorks is a dashboard where users can place all the essential tools in one place for easier monitoring. For example, information on sales orders, production schedule, industry news and more will all be available on one page,” she added.
My.SolidWorks also includes content such as training materials which users can refer to, and acts as a free community.
My.SolidWorks is freely available to anyone at the link above, but Dassault Systèmes said that users will get the most out of it if they have or register for a free account. SolidWorks Customers can login using their existing customer portal accounts, and SolidWorks subscription service customers gain additional access through My.SolidWorks to private reserved content.
“This is one way we help to connect the ecosystem. We have a lot of information out there, but we didn’t connect them together before,” said Toh.
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