PTC launches creo; rebrands Pro/E

PTC has just launched a new suite of apps called creo, which it says will support its vision for MCAD for the next 20 years. Each app is intended to supply the appropriate, role-specific tool, to a person in the product development team. President and CEO Jim Heppelmann says creo is likely to end up on an iPad. He says the software was built from the ground up, using elements of Pro/E, CoCreate, and ProductView, to address several problems that still exist in CAD:

**Usability -- today it's all about instant gratification; many users are forced to use complex programs that are overkill for what is needed.

**Interoperability -- creo was developed on an open architecture that lets all the apps talk to each other and other programs as well.

**Technology lockin -- it's too expensive to keep moving to newer products. Haven't yet figured out how to license the technology. Existing customers will have the exact configurations they have today in the new versions. Eventually, they will get transitioned to a new licensing model.

**Assembly management --uses BOMs to drive CAD. With the Windchill program, this integrates PLM and CAD.

The apps in creo are:

AnyRole Apps --for so-called "casual" users such as design managers that need to, for example, preview the overview of a car, interogate the data, review it, and perform interference checks. There are no unnecessary analysis or parametric tools.

AnyMode Modeling -- allows 2D to 3D without being just a sketcher or a 2D drafter. It is a "purpose built" program to start in 2D and gradually add design intent (parameters, contraints, and relationships) to eventually move to 3D. 3D data can be passed back to 2D, changed, and then re-imported without any loss of design intelligence.

Any Data Adoption -- kernel allows working in either a parametric or a direct approach; app is also intended to be a way for companies to maintain legacy data. Lets users work with data from Pro/E, Catia, Unigraphics, etc.

Any BOM Assembly -- This targets large assemblies, which need a top-down modeling approach. The app lets production planners, for example, easily analyze multiple variations of an assembly.

An option is Windchill if you build configured products.

Almost shockingly, to go along with this "vision," the company has rebranded its well-known products:

Pro/E will become creo elements/pro

CoCreate will become creo elements/direct

Product View will become creo elements/view

Version 1.0 will be released in Summer 2011; Fall 2011 will include the configuration element.

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