It’s no easy task navigating the maze of new online tools and technologies from electronics distributors and industry software providers. Her are a few noteworthy enhancements announced this month:
- On January 11th, Avnet Electronics Marketing announced the launch of its POURS app for Apple products, a program that lets customers remotely manage point-of-use supply chain activity. POURS stands for point-of-use replenishment system, an Avnet program launched in 1992. The new app allows customers with an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch to monitor activity and take action on exceptions without logging into the POURS Web site from their PC. It also notifies purchasing staff and managers when order approval is needed and allows them to complete the approval process with just a few clicks. And when inventory ships from the supplier, an advance ship notice appears in the app so that users can easily track shipments directly from their iPhone or iPad.
- Arena Solutions, a provider of cloud-based bill of materials (BOM) and change management software for small and mid-size manufacturers, announced the launch of its PartsList program, which allows design engineers to create and share clean, fully documented BOMs with purchasing or potential vendors. Designers can use PartsList to create multiple lists, with parts from any distributor, according to Arena. Engineers can organize their parts list however they’d like then share their lists with anyone who needs them by exporting CSV or PDX files. When the designer is ready to purchase the parts, he or she simply selects “Buy” to go to the original distributor page for easy purchasing.
- And finally, this week Newark/element14 announced key additions to its suite of design tools available through its online community. First, the company announced it now distributes ARM system design solutions in the Americas, including ARM development tools, software, evaluation boards and debug hardware. A follow-up announcement touted the availability of PIC-based development boards in conjunction with Microchip; the companies now offer the new PIC32 Multimedia Developers Kit on the element14 community. Both deals expand Newark/element14’s position as source of engineering knowledge and solutions that improve design productivity and promote its mission to “\\[redefine\\] distribution through engineering design solutions,” Jeff Jussel, senior director of global technology marketing at Newark/element14, explained in a recent press briefing.