Hanover Fair First Impressions

In the hotel bar after the first day of the show, a guy two stools away observed that we had obviously not been impressed by the show.  For us it was just another show.  The guy two stools down was from Indiana and it was his first show.  He was more impressed than we were.  For us there was nothing new.  There was nothing really newsworthy.  There were no great product announcements.

I checked my impression with a couple journalists that I encountered who noted the lack of news as well.  I think the dearth of product announcements is partly due to Hanover Fair’s fading importance.  SPS/IPC/Drives show seems to be the ascending star.  That show is stealing all the thunder from Hanover.  (An observation shared by ARC: Hanover 2013: Day 3.)  The announcements at Hanover were more incremental improvements than breakthroughs.

For me the best part of the show was reconnecting with PROFIpeople and PI North America members from the US that I usually only see in Germany.  Randy Durick from Turck was there.  After saying I see people in Germany more than in the US, I saw Randy again at the Denver PROFINET one-day training class yesterday!

To some extent when it comes to PROFINET at least the lack of news is not altogether a bad thing.

We have become accustomed to announcing technical advances of PROFINET at Hanover and SPS.  Yet this year, the announcements were very modest and not technical.  PROFINET has reached the level of maturity that PROFIBUS reached before.  The PROFINET communication protocol is stable and has been for some years.  Advances now are in application profiles and applications.  Additional application profiles are in the works with one for process applications as an example.  The PROFIenergy application profile continues to gain adoption.  Guidelines are being updated with the security guideline as an example.  The number and type of applications are blossoming.  (See the GE Appliances’ application story here for one example and read our newsletters for more.)

So the fact that major technical news was not forthcoming is really a major positive.  Going forward we will see more icing on the cake, but the cake is fully baked at this point.

There really was some worthwhile news though.  Watch for it in my next post.

–Carl Henning