InTouch 10.0: 200 new features; automatic porting to MS Vista

At corporate headquarters in Lake Forest, CA, Wonderware engineers and marketing people gathered to present what they called their “most significant launch in 20 years.”
By Control Engineering Staff September 13, 2007

At corporate headquarters in Lake Forest, CA, Wonderware engineers and marketing people gathered to present what they called their “most significant launch in 20 years.” Celebrating the 20thanniversary of the company, they announced and demonstrated InTouch 10.0, Development Studio and System Platform 3.0 — products, they said, that let even the smallest plant implement a common, real-time system platform for visualization. The company’s Web-based “Wonderware Breakthrough Experience provides operations, engineering and IT personnel with first-hand experience of the capabilities of the new offerings, which also include Compact Panel hardware.

Said Wonderware President Mike Bradley, Sr., “We have invested more than 100 person-years to ensure that these offerings and our channels can deliver on real-world software performance and productivity that will continue to enable our customers to meet some of their toughest operations, engineering and IT challenges.” The 450,000 licensed InTouch customers can get InTouch 10.0 and begin migrating independent applications immediately, he added. Wonderware is offering discounts for customers that upgrade their existing InTouch software and additionally purchase the Wonderware System Platform 3.0 and customer support.

InTouch 10.0 HMI software adds new ArchestrA graphics capability, along with direct support for Microsoft.NET technology to provide enterprise-wide visualization for a range of real-time applications. More than 200 new features are incorporated. The software allows a modular approach to adding MES (manufacturing execution system) functionality, and provides older InTouch applications with automatic compatibility to the Microsoft Vista operating system. Chris Colyer, worldwide director of manufacturing operations strategy for Microsoft, said, “The beauty of what Wonderware has done is to make older applications Vista-compatible. The InTouch launch is making software cool for manufacturing. It allows people to become key elements to improved manufacturing performance.”

The Wonderware Development Studio provides a unified environment that lets IT and engineering teams collaborate on software application modeling, development, change management and deployment across InTouch 10.0 HMI, System Platform 3.0 and associated application modules.

System Platform 3.0 delivers runtime performance updates to the Wonderware Application Server. These include the ability to take advantage of the latest multicore microprocessor technology, and a rich set of software services to create, deploy, and manage distributed real-time applications with faster time-to-value and with lower life-cycle costs.

Compact Panels provide a new entry-level price point for smaller manufacturers. They bundle a subset of InTouch 10.0 HMI runtime functionality with industrial touchscreen operator panels that operate Windows Mobile 6.0. A range of screen sizes are supported.

The ARC Advisory group weighed in on the significance of the announcement. “The manufacturing community has spoken loud and clear that they expect their automation suppliers to protect their application investments, even if it was a solution deployed in the 1980s on a legacy Windows operating system,” said Craig Resnick, ARC research director. “ARC is a strong advocate of solutions that offer migration from legacy to state-of-the-art functionally while not disrupting a manufacturer’s production schedule or requiring a significant amount of time or work. It appears that Wonderware has met this challenge.”

Wonderware system integrators involved in beta testing the new offerings also offered their enthusiastic support of the new products. Brad Wise, vice president of business development for Maverick Technologies liked how the software “extends existing Microsoft security with a centralized, rule-based approach” and praised Wonderware for its “rapid, responsive” security patch management procedures.

—Edited by Renee Robbins, Editorial Director, Control Engineering

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