Engineers are under unprecedented pressure to build products that are used by thousands, if not millions, of consumers every day.

Just ask Bernd Zapf. Head of development, new business, and technologies at Heller Group, a machine tool manufacturer in Germany, Zapf says today’s organizations must increasingly “strike a balance between the design, engineering, manufacturing, operation, and craftsmanship of developing a product based on stringent guidelines.”

It’s a tall order, but one that Zapf says artificial intelligence (AI) technology can support by capturing the right data and guiding engineers through product design and development.

No wonder a November 2020 McKinsey survey reveals that more than half of organizations have adopted AI in at least one function, and 22% of respondents report at least 5% of their companywide earnings are attributable to AI. And in manufacturing, 71% of respondents have seen a 5% or more increase in revenue with AI adoption.

But that wasn’t always the case. Once “rarely used in product development,” AI has experienced an evolution over the past few years, Zapf says. Today, tech giants known for their innovations in AI, such as Google, IBM, and Amazon, “have set new standards for the use of AI in other processes,” such as engineering.

“AI is a promising and exploratory area that can significantly improve user experience for designing engineers, as well as gather relevant data in the development process for specific applications,” says Katrien Wyckaert, director of industry solutions for Siemens Industry Software.

The result is a growing appreciation for a technology that promises to simplify complex systems, get products to market faster, and drive product innovation.

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By: MIT Technology Review Insights
Title: Product design gets an AI makeover
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2021/05/10/1024531/product-design-gets-an-ai-makeover/
Published Date: Mon, 10 May 2021 14:00:00 +0000

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