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CAD Tech News (#98)

15 Nov, 2018 By: Cadalyst Staff


▶ Graebert Sees Strong Future for CAD beyond the Desktop

The developer behind ARES is determined to explore the cloud and mobile potential of CAD.

By Randall S. Newton

Despite common use of notebooks, tablets, and smartphones in the workplace, CAD is still considered by many to be a desktop-only tool. "It is a 'winter is coming' strategy" for CAD vendors, says Cédric Desbordes, marketing executive for Graebert GmbH. CAD vendors want more customers, but they keep insisting CAD is an experts-only, desktop solution, limiting growth by not appealing to a larger market.

Graebert sees itself as the valiant knight coming to the rescue in this situation. The company sells a three-part portfolio of DWG-based CAD software for desktop, mobile, and cloud. It also develops CAD software for other vendors, and it offers extended features to simplify enterprise deployment.

"We must help companies realize good alternatives exist to extend access to drawings throughout the organization, available not only for viewing but for editing and reuse," says Wilfried Graebert, company CEO and founder. "Drafting is a utility like word processing," he adds. "There are traditional CAD users and there is the larger audience for the information. The larger audience now wants access to the drawings on their mobile devices." Graebert says the market will be wide open for growth as soon as more people discover CAD can be a utility for daily use.

Graebert tailors its three products for the nature of the intended user: ARES Commander on the desktop (Windows/Mac/Linux) is a full-featured professional software application for daily use. ARES Touch (Android/iOS) can edit DWG files, but offers an interactive "see it when you need it" user interface. ARES Kudo (any computer with a browser) can also edit DWG files, and provides the technology that keeps drawings used on all three products synchronized.

Graebert publishes three versions of its DWG-compatible ARES CAD platform: Commander for desktop, Touch for mobile devices, and Kudo for browser-based use.
Graebert publishes three versions of its DWG-compatible ARES CAD platform: Commander for desktop, Touch for mobile devices, and Kudo for browser-based use.

"We find there are three to five mobile users ready [for CAD] for every existing desktop user," says Desbordes. "There are perhaps 10 million users of DWG worldwide. We believe the market can grow five to ten times larger." For example, one Graebert corporate customer has 1,000 CAD desktop users. After an internal review, this customer reportedly realized that there are an additional 7,000 employees who need either regular or occasional access to drawings. "Cloud and mobile are not cannibalizing desktop users," Desbordes says; "they are companions." Read more »

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Randall S. Newton is managing director of Consilia Vektor, a boutique consulting firm specializing in engineering and distributed ledger technologies for industry.

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