Anaheim Pacific Design & Manufacturing 2017

I was at Anaheim Pacific Design & Mfg 2017 two weeks ago. As always, it was a great and fun event. Couple of tech trends noticed at the trade show.

Product demo in 3D animation. It’s interesting to see a lot of more companies invested in developing animation content to demonstrate product, project, design, or concept. When putting words in colorful videos, visualization does great job explaining product features and making good impression with booth visitors.

Use of tablet and big screen. Almost all mid-to-big-size booth had at least a tablet and/or big LCD screen. At the end of the day, you’ve got to do something special to stand out from the crowd and let people see your booth even from the end of an aisle. An interesting app (about your product/company) preloaded on a tablet would get visitors stay around at your booth a bit longer.

SolidWorks 3D. Many manufacturers rely on their engineering team to generate product 3D images using SolidWorks. SolidWorks and its plugins are great for product design and engineering work. But, two problems:

1. It’s extra work for engineers (mostly 3D rendering is for marketing/sales use).

2. Engineers don’t necessarily have the best skills for 3D texturing and product presentation.

Big companies have their own 3D team. I’m talking about Siemens, Fanuc, Mitsubishi…The big names. They have a whole team dedicated for 3D works, e.g. design, rendering, animation, and even VR. A small-to-medium-size manufacturer normally cannot afford to have such a dream team.

No VR used at any booth. Surprisingly, I didn’t see any booth used VR for product demo. I know it’s a long way to see VR becomes mainstream in manufacturing, but was hoping to see some pioneers to give it a try. VR is a great tool to give your booth that leap from the crowd and impress visitors. Encouragingly, couple of marketing managers said they were planning some VR marketing, but just didn’t know where to start.

That’s it for 2017 Pacific Design & Mfg.

Stop presenting. Let customer play.