TeamViewer joins forces with Siemens to realize the industrial metaverse
In late July 2022, TeamViewer held a press event on the topic of “industrial metaverse” at its headquarters in Göppingen, Germany. At the event, TeamViewer announced a new strategic partnership with Siemens Digital Industries Software. The two companies share a joint vision to realize the industrial metaverse. In a first step, the two companies announced the integration of the connected worker platform TeamViewer Frontline with Teamcenter, the PLM solution from Siemens.
In contrast to the “classic” metaverse for consumers, the industrial metaverse aims to create holistic, real-time digital twins of entire factories, including all kinds of elements, such as machines, robots, AGVs (automated guided vehicles), and workers. For TeamViewer, the visualization of digital content to support connected workers in their daily work via tablets and smart glasses (including AR) is a core aspect of its overall vision.
Coca-Cola, Audi, and Deutsche Bahn already use bits and pieces from the industrial metaverse
Beside the big vision, TeamViewer gave concrete examples of companies leveraging bits and pieces of the industrial metaverse already today. Dr Hendrik Witt, Chief Product Officer at TeamViewer, gave the example of Coca-Cola, which in partnership with TeamViewer introduced working with AR glasses to its warehouses. Employees wear monolenses which project information about the product and logistics data onto the glass, thereby freeing up workers’ hands as they no longer need to hold tablets or physical paper, which was traditionally used.
Another example of the industrial metaverse can be seen at Audi. The Bavarian car manufacturer uses AR glasses to train its employees in quality management. TeamViewer developed software for AR glasses that can highlight points of interest on a physical car, making it easy for trainees to practice quality checks on real cars without an additional person being present to answer questions, and again freeing up their hands for a more ergonomic work experience. Workers can move around the car while wearing AR glasses that highlight predefined spots on the car that need to be checked.
Franziska Kost from Deutsche Bahn (DB) described at the event how the rail infrastructure division of Germany’s national railway company uses Microsoft’s Hololens to project virtual railroad tracks and switches to classrooms, giving students a less theoretical and more practical understanding of the subject and a more detailed illustration of individual components and malfunctions. Thanks to this, DB was able to better combine theory and practice, and ultimately give its employees a better understanding of the relationships between components.
Metaverse for healthcare
In a recent press release, TeamViewer announced the first results of its collaboration with Wilhelmshilfe e.V and the Bureau of Economic Development of the City of Göppingen on the use of augmented-reality-based digital solutions in nursing care. The aim of the project was to improve processes in elderly care through digital solutions and make them more efficient. The caregivers were equipped with smart glasses on which the augmented reality solution from TeamViewer was installed. The software allows to display information such as a sequence of work steps and individual features of the resident directly in the caregiver's field of vision. The digital solution thus replaces time-consuming and delayed documentation of care activities, facilitates handover between staff, and the written documentation of individual steps can also be completely replaced by voice recordings with the new AR solution.
In PAC’s view, the industrial metaverse will not emerge in one big bang; it is more of a step-by-step approach to the digitalization of industrial operations and beyond.