Invensys' Wonderware Business Unit Launches New Line of Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers | Automation.com

Invensys' Wonderware Business Unit Launches New Line of Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers

Integrated Offerings Built on Latest Innovations in Hardware, Microsoft Operating Systems, Wonderware Software and Support Services

LAKE FOREST, Calif., Nov. 24, 2003 -- Wonderware, an operating unit of Invensys Systems, Inc., today announced the release of its new product line of Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers. The new line of integrated hardware, software and services from Wonderware combines world-class hardware, powerful InTouch 8.0 human-machine interface (HMI) software, extensive plant communications capabilities and award-winning support services. These new offerings enable a consistent plant intelligence software solution across a broad spectrum of industrial applications.

InTouch 8.0 software is part of the FactorySuite A2 ("A-squared") product series, which provides plant-wide solutions based on the ArchestrA industrial automation and information software architecture from Invensys. The "A2" signifies the use of ArchestrA technology.

The Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers are ready to function out of the box. The open PC platforms are pre-integrated with InTouch and communications software, so no additional software installation is required. The Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers enable customers to use Wonderware's familiar, market-leading InTouch software with increased versatility and mobility, which can reduce considerable time and expense for operator training, IT software administration and management, and vendor costs.

"Integrating InTouch software with hardened tablets and touch panel computers increases our customers' mobility on the plant floor and makes it even more convenient for them to manage their production processes," said Mike Bradley, president of Invensys' Wonderware and ArchestrA business units. "InTouch applications can be easily accessed with the new Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers, retaining our customers' engineering and training investments. Customers can now extend the power of Wonderware software to places never thought possible before."

According to Jim Taylor, an industry analyst at Venture Development Corp. of Natick, Mass., "Wonderware is a leader in a new trend to offer hardware options coupled with software. Wonderware is spearheading a unique approach to offer open software solutions on state-of-the-art hardware platforms."

The full functionality of InTouch software on Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers can be used to provide visualization and control in many automation scenarios previously serviced only by closed proprietary "dumb" terminals. Proprietary, stand-alone hardware terminals can now be replaced with networked PC-based HMI applications that are fully connected to supervisory control and plant intelligence operations.

"Customers can now replace 'dumb' panels, which offer scarce features, functions and plant communications, with versatile, feature-rich Wonderware Touch Panel Computers to manage their manufacturing processes," said Charlie Ross, vice president of business development and systems for Wonderware. "In addition, Wonderware Industrial Tablets have been ruggedized for the extreme environments that exist throughout process industries. This allows customers to leverage the power of InTouch software everywhere they need it."

Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers have achieved some of the most stringent certifications in the industry while providing unmatched durability, reliability and features.

About Wonderware Industrial Tablets
The Wonderware Industrial Tablets, integrated with InTouch software, facilitate mobile information management. Engineers and operators are no longer tied to a single station or desk to perform their duties throughout the plant. Becoming mobile enables customers to increase their productivity and efficiency while performing normal daily tasks on the factory floor.

The InTouch software resident in Wonderware Industrial Tablets has been enhanced to integrate Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Tablet PC Edition operating system features such as inking and annotation. Inking enables customers to write values into data links in their own handwriting, which can save a tremendous amount of time for people who will use an Industrial Tablet computer as a mobile data collection station. Annotation enables users to mark up a graphical display with pens and highlighters. By making notes directly on HMI displays, users can quickly and precisely communicate areas of concern or interest, allowing for quick resolution of production inefficiencies.

In addition, Wonderware Industrial Tablets come standard with wireless capabilities. Users can communicate directly with the wireless-enabled supervisory control systems while traveling throughout the plant or to different locations. Wireless access is achieved through a virtual private network designed to provide tight security for all communications and operations.

Several docking station options also are available so that customers can use Industrial Tablets in a variety of conditions and environments.

About Wonderware Touch Panel Computers
Wonderware Touch Panel Computers provide users with the freedom and power to use a PC-based InTouch HMI without being limited to a closed proprietary terminal. In addition, the extensive I/O and system-communication capabilities of the Wonderware software can unlock valuable real-time information from connected plant equipment. The Touch Panel Computer's display has been designed for use in harsh industrial environments and offers an open, modular design for flexibility and versatility. The computers can be easily customized to meet a variety of requirements and quickly expanded through quick connections and disconnections of the display from the computer.

In addition, Wonderware Touch Panel Computers offer support for both Microsoft Windows XP Professional and XP Embedded operating systems. The computers also can optimize performance with additional memory and faster processor speeds than comparable proprietary units on the market today.

About InTouch Software
InTouch software provides visualization for plant-centric, operator-centric manufacturing information systems in which information is shared within and between plants. The InTouch HMI is in use in more than 100,000 plants worldwide and in a variety of vertical markets, including food processing, oil and gas, electronics, automotive, chemical, pharmaceutical, pulp and paper, transportation and utilities.

Engineers and operators who are already familiar with InTouch software do not need further software training and first-time customers have reported significant ease of use. The new Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers can also access existing InTouch software applications without additional engineering modifications, therefore retaining customers' engineering investments while enabling standardization of HMI platforms throughout a plant. This reduction in training time also means that IT and engineering departments will be able to reduce the amount of time spent on software administration and management.

In addition, because Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers feature an InTouch runtime environment, users can easily standardize and distribute applications based on the InTouch HMI throughout a facility. This will save customers time and money because they will only need to learn and maintain one software system.

About Wonderware
Wonderware is an operating unit of the Production Management Division (PMD) of Invensys plc and is the world's leading supplier of industrial automation software. Founded in 1987, Wonderware pioneered the use of the Microsoft Windows operating system in HMI automation software for manufacturing operation systems. Wonderware powers intelligent plant decisions in real time.

Based in Lake Forest, Calif., Wonderware has regional sales and development offices throughout North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia to provide support to its network of more than 160 distributor offices. Wonderware has approximately 300,000 software licenses in approximately 100,000 plants worldwide, which is about 30 percent of the world's 335,000 plants with 20 or more employees. For more information, visit the Wonderware Web site at www.wonderware.com.

About Invensys
Invensys is a global leader in production technology. The group helps customers improve productivity, performance and profitability using innovative services and technologies and a deep understanding of their industries and applications.

Invensys Production Management works closely with customers to increase performance of production assets, maximize return on investment in production and data management technologies and remove cost and cash from the supply chain. The division includes APV, Avantis, Eurotherm, Foxboro, IMServ, SimSci-Esscor, Triconex and Wonderware. These businesses address process and batch industries -- including oil and gas, chemicals, power and utilities, food and beverage, and personal health care -- and the discrete and hybrid manufacturing sectors.

Invensys Rail Systems is a global leader in the design, manufacture, supply, installation, commissioning and maintenance of safety related rail signaling and control systems as well as a complete range of rail signaling and communications products. The business includes Westinghouse Rail Systems Limited (WRSL), Dimetronic Signals, Safetran Systems, Burco Services, Westinghouse Signals Australia and Foxboro Transportation. WRSL was recently awarded two contracts valued at more than £850m (US$1.3 billion) for the renewal of signaling on the London Underground.

Invensys also currently serves other market sectors through its Development Division. The businesses in this division are: Appliance Controls, APV Baker, Climate Controls, Hansen Transmissions, Lambda, Metering Systems and Powerware. Invensys is actively seeking to develop these businesses through equity partners or new owners.
Invensys operates in more than 60 countries, with its headquarters in London. For more information, visit www.invensys.com.


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