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Sales spurt as faith grows in PC-based control
Published:  01 June, 2000

Sales spurt as faith grows in PC-based control

Global sales of PC-based open motion control software (OMCS) will grow by almost 52% a year until 2004, a new report predicts. This expansion - from $32m last year to $263m in 2004 - reflects the increasing user confidence in PC-based control.

"Growth in the market for OMCS solutions has been inhibited in the past by users` reluctance to switch from traditional proprietary box solutions," says Sal Spada, a senior analyst with ARC which produced the report. But, he adds, this is now changing.

"Leading automation suppliers such as Siemens, Kuka, Sanyo Denki and Schneider Electric have introduced OMCS systems in 1999 that bring further credibility to a market segment that has suffered from being in an early adopter growth cycle," Spada explains. "Barring any unforeseen economic downturns, the overall worldwide growth of OMCS will be extremely rapid as confidence in the user community continues to increase."

OMCS spans real-time operating systems, including Windows CE and NT, that allow a PC to operate as a general motion controller or computer numerical control (CNC).

The PC-based control systems are helping machine builders and end users to keep the cost of machinery down. But hardware costs are only a fraction of the real costs associated with machine control, Spada points out.

Problems of integrating components from different suppliers have emerged but the move towards standard networked architectures, such as Ethernet and Firewire, is easing these problems, reports ASC senior analyst Dick Caro.

Details from ARC at

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