The partnership between PTC and Microsoft. What’s really involved there?

First, Microsoft supplies a Cloud platform for processing and data collection called Azure. It’s a competitor to Amazon Web Services. The difference here, though, is that PTC has developed a reference architecture, alongside Microsoft, to deploy ThingWorx, which is their Cloud IoT platform. This was deployed along with other capabilities like Vuforia and Windchill, with connectivity to Windchill so that you can deploy these almost like an out-of-the-box set.

Instead of figuring out what Cloud infrastructure platform they want to use for data collection and processing to try to cobble together many different platforms, for IoT collection, and instead of investing a whole bunch of effort in that with resources in IT, companies can dedicate those resources, money, and time to actually focusing on business processes and figuring out how you need to customize something like ThingWorx to their business and how to make it work for them.

This process does accelerate deploying the solution, getting something you can start working on, and exploring how you’re going to get business value out of IoT.