Autodesk and Siemens announce interoperability deal

The two CAD leaders are already working together on the 3MF Consortium to create a new 3D printing data format.Internet-of-things-interoperability

Autodesk and Siemens today announce an interoperability agreement regarding their CAD and PLM products. The two companies agree to “significantly improve the interoperability between their companies’ respective software offerings,” says an announcement from Autodesk.

It is the rare manufacturer that only uses software from one vendor. Moving data from one software format to another, or from one department to another, can become a translation headache.

The two companies say the agreement aims to decrease the overall effort and costs commonly associated with supporting mixed CAD environments. Under the terms of the agreement, both companies will share toolkit technology and exchange end-user software applications to build and market interoperable products.

“Interoperability is a major challenge for customers across the manufacturing industry, and Autodesk has been working diligently to create an increasingly open environment throughout our technology platforms,” said Lisa Campbell, vice president of manufacturing strategy and marketing at Autodesk. “We understand that our customers use a mix of products in their workflow and providing them with the flexibility they need to get their jobs done is our top priority.”

The two companies already work together on a related manufacturing data problem, the creation of a modern data format for 3D printing from CAD models. The 3MF Consortium includes the two as members, along with industry leaders like HP, Stratasys, 3D Systems, and Microsoft.

“Incompatibility among various CAD systems has been an ongoing issue that adversely affects manufacturers worldwide, and can add to the cost of products from cars and airplanes to smartphones and golf clubs,” said Dr. Stefan Jockusch, Vice President for strategy at Siemens PLM Software. “This partnership is another positive and important step in our drive to promote openness and interoperability and to help reduce costs for the global manufacturing industry by facilitating collaboration throughout their extended enterprises.”

No specific technical details or timetable was included in the announcement.