Building Smarter Products Starts with Designing Smarter

Gartner predicts that the total number of “things” or smart or connected devices will reach 20.4 billion by 2020.

Customers are driving companies to develop smart products or add electronics and connection (wireless, Bluetooth, etc.) to their existing products, as it seems to be our quest to control everything from the smart phone in our back pocket, such as the temperature of our homes, even when we are not there.  The question is, “Are you looking to create smarter products?”

Adding electronics (or “brains”) to our products greatly increases the complexity of the design process, production time, and ultimately the cost.  However, the main hurdle often is the lack of collaboration between the various design discipline involved in the design of smart products. Electrical, mechanical, electronics and network engineers all use different tools, and the collaboration between departments is “low tech,” as files are passed back and forth to find the best possible design.

SOLIDWORKS has been working to change this paradigm and has created tools to make collaboration between SOLIDWORKS CAD and SOLIDWORKS Electrical and SOLIDWORKS PCB simple, and effortless.  This includes no need for data transfer, and automatic updates when designs change, so all teams are always up to date.  The goal being to determine a cohesive design the first time, without finding errors after final design or after production.

To learn more about designing smart devices and the keys to collaboration to improve smart product design, go to: You will find many materials and answers on how to get started with designing your next smart product.



Cliff Medling

Cliff Medling is a Senior Marketing Manager at SolidWorks and the host for the Born to Design Podcast.