GE pushes digital transformation, industrial growth with 3 new products

At Minds + Machines in Europe, GE announced three new products to encourage digital transformation in a range of industry verticals.

Video: How CIOs can lead digital transformation efforts

GE unveiled three new solutions on Tuesday at the Minds + Machines event in Europe focused on boosting digital transformation in a variety of industries. The core announcements, which focus on industrial assets, environments, and operations, were as follows:

  1. GE Digital announced the integration of its ServiceMax field service management (FSM) solution and asset performance management (APM) portfolio to transform service operations, reduce cost, and eliminate unplanned downtime.
  2. GE Ventures launched Avitas Systems, a new venture offering inspection services with advanced robotics, data analytics, and artificial intelligence.
  3. GE Power released Predix-powered digital utility to connect real-time machine and operations data with energy trading.

"Europe can lead the digital industrial era," said GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt in a press release. "Investment in technology, such as automation, advanced manufacturing, and artificial intelligence - along with new skills - can transform industry and drive productivity. GE has long been committed to Europe, and we are invested in its future." (In separate news, Immelt announced on Monday that he is stepping down as the chairman and CEO effective August 1.)

SEE: AT&T uses GE Predix to boost IoT efforts, expands smart cities internationally in Dublin (TechRepublic)

GE acquired ServiceMax late last year for $915 million. GE Digital and ServiceMax are releasing an integrated solution in September or October 2017 that will serve as a cloud-based FSM solution with its APM portfolio. It allows for data from machines in a customer's company to be analyzed for the development of asset management strategies such as scheduling maintenance and tracking work.

GE Digital's APM and FSM solutions will collect and analyze service data. This will include predictive maintenance requirements and data on machine failures, and the recommended work actions to correct the failures. This will help industrial companies move past traditional asset monitoring and be able to more effectively monitor and maintain their assets.

"We are seeing tremendous results when you employ a connected asset strategy within service. Some of the statistics we're seeing are that first-time fix rates go up 12% when you have assets connected to your service solution," said David Yarnold, CEO of ServiceMax. A first-time fix is when a service contractor has the parts on hand for a needed repair during their first visit. "This is nitty gritty pragmatic stuff. It really matters to customers and your brand."

SEE: Digital transformation: A CXO's guide (TechRepublic)

In other news, GE Ventures launched Avistas Systems, which is a data-driven company that will use predictive analytics, robotics, and AI for inspection services for the oil, gas, transportation, and energy industries. It uses the Predix platform and will gather data while integrating regulatory and external sources such as weather. Optimal inspection and maintenance schedules will be given, and give deeper insights into the data.

In addition, GE announced that its new "digital utility" is a suite of Predix-based applications that connect real-time machine data with a utility company's profitability. It's intended to help utility companies use analytics to navigate the fast-changing energy market. The suite includes updates to GE Power's operations optimization software.

Three takeaways for TechRepublic readers:

  1. GE Digital integrated its ServiceMax field service management (FSM) solution and APM portfolio.
  2. GE Ventures launched Avitas Systems, which is a new venture offering inspection services for the energy sector with advanced robotics, data analytics, and artificial intelligence.
  3. Digital utility is new from GE Power and it will connect real-time machine and operations data with energy trading.

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Image: iStock/monsitj

By Teena Maddox

Teena Maddox is a former Associate Managing Editor at TechRepublic. She oversees TechRepublic's news team and TechRepublic Premium. She focuses on tech and business and how the two worlds intersect. Teena's lifelong journalism career has included wri...