Shopping at IPC APEX EXPO: Evolutionary or Revolutionary Products?


Reading time ( words)

Every year, managers and technologists descend upon IPC APEX EXPO, shopping list in hand, scouring the aisles in search of deals on capital equipment, software, alloys, chemistry, and whatever else they can find. Sure, many of the big pieces of equipment on display are already sold. On the flip side, there are plenty of deals to be made at IPC APEX EXPO because no company wants to pay to ship a machine twice.

As you're finalizing your shopping list, take a second to consider this: Are you in the market for products that are evolutionary or revolutionary? And what do those terms even mean for someone looking for new DFM software or a new pick-and-place machine?

Evolutionary vs. Revolutionary

The term "revolutionary" gets thrown around pretty often in the electronics world. But most new products—even the most expensive—fall into the evolutionary category; they feature logical updates and improvements over the last revision of that particular product. You could see these updates coming, and they make a good product a better product.

If you look back on a product’s life cycle, you can track the new functionalities as they were incorporated each year or so, much like parents chart their children’s growth by marking the kids’ height on the wall on their birthday. Evolutionary change is slow and gradual, and fairly predictable. I imagine that most of the equipment and software in your facility contain evolutionary improvement and upgrades over the previous models.

But revolutionary change is disruptive to the status quo. Revolutionary change is unpredictable, an upset applecart that can’t be set right until the full effects of the shift are quantified and understood. Sometimes the reverberations from revolutionary change make it almost impossible to measure its long-term effects for years.

You know your product is revolutionary if it forces other companies to change the way they operate. I liken revolutionary change to a quantum leap; it’s not exactly an apples-to-apples comparison, but it’s close.

The Model T was clearly revolutionary, putting the average Joe into an automobile and blacksmiths and wagon builders out of work almost overnight. EDA software and the SMT process were likewise revolutionary, changing the way PCBs were designed and assembled, and allowing employees to be more productive.

Then again, some products are “leaners” that are tough to categorize.

To read the full article, which appeared in the December 2018 issue of SMT007 Magazine, click here.

Share




Suggested Items

The ‘Intel’ on Advanced Packaging Options

11/29/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
Dr. Tom Rucker is vice president in technology development at Intel and was a keynote speaker at the IPC Advanced Packaging Symposium, which helped set the table for the rest of the agenda. Tom understands this “radical and seismic” shift in terms of technology and breaks down what it means for the semiconductor and PCB fab industries. There’s absolutely a place at the table for PCB fabricators, but what are the first steps?

Brian O'Leary: Organizing to Meet e-Mobility in the Market

11/28/2022 | Real Time with...SMTAI
Brian O’Leary, head of Indium's e-Mobility & Infrastructure, reacts to SMTAI’s keynote delivered by John Thomas of Autel. The title of the keynote presentation was "The Electronic Vehicle (EV) Conundrum" which addressed the sheer scale of the transition to e-Mobility that we are now undertaking. In this interview, O’Leary discusses some of the technical challenges faced in product development by Indium (and everyone else) as well as the new IPC e-Mobility council. Participation in the council is open to everyone.

Advanced Packaging Symposium: Looking in the Rearview Mirror

11/23/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
Matt Kelly had the vision and Jan Vardaman set the tone for the IPC Advanced Packaging Symposium, Oct. 11-13 in Washington, D.C. So, did they accomplish their goals? What were the real takeaways from the event, and what can we expect to see next? Spoiler alert: Matt and Jan came away impressed in more ways than one.



Copyright © 2022 I-Connect007 | IPC Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.