Autodesk reveals cloud-based 3D CAD platform

Fusion 360 to make industrial design easier and faster.

Autodesk has launched a new cloud based version of its 3D engineering software suite that allows designers to collaborate on 3D product designs.

The company said that its Fusion 360 product is the world's first "comprehensive cloud-based 3D modelling offering" that enables access from any location at any time from web browsers and mobile devices.

The cloud-based software supports an open design environment, allowing designers to incorporate and modify CAD data from virtually any source.

"Data is at the centre of the product design process, and the cloud frees that data to be accessible anywhere, anytime," said Robert Kross, senior vice president, Design, Lifecycle and Simulation at Autodesk. "Autodesk Fusion 360 will give designers and engineers the first powerful, easy-to-use and complete cloud-based design solution."

Autodesk Fusion 360 is based on the Autodesk 360 cloud-based platform and adds to Autodesk's cloud portfolio for manufacturers, which includes Autodesk PLM 360, a cloud-based product lifecycle management offering, and Autodesk Simulation 360, a comprehensive set of simulation tools delivered securely in the cloud.

The tool is  geared toward small business professionals and spans pans all aspects of industrial and mechanical design, with "anytime, anywhere access" to data as well as collaborative and social development capabilities.

The tool also includes a new user interface that can be edited depending on the role and the user's expertise. It provides built-in guidance to speed learning by novice users and the ability to turn off guidance and access more complex functions for design experts.

The software will available on a term basis making it affordable to businesses of all sizes, said the company. It said that this delivery model would provide maximum flexibility and eliminate the high upfront costs of software license purchases, as well as the annual expense of software updates and upgrades.

The cloud-based design tool is expected to be generally available next year.

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