Consumer trends shake up industrial component demands

Within the industrial sector, it is essential that businesses have reliable access to the components that keep their critical machinery operational. In the past, companies could continue to use the same vendor for years, knowing that when the time came to replace an important part within their machinery, that item would be readily available. However, for many industrial operations, this is no longer the case as their once-trusted component providers begin to increase the turnover rate of new products to keep up with the rapid movement of the consumer electronics market. In this constantly changing industry, businesses require vendors that can offer a stable line of products that will remain compatible with existing hardware and systems for years to come.

DIGITMES contributors Ninelu Tu and Joseph Tsai reported that the average lifespan of current electronics products has reduced substantially in recent years. Popular devices such as smartphones, notebooks and tablets now offer a product life of only three months, down from six when consumer options were initially introduced. The market for these products – particularly smartphones – is notoriously competitive, with manufacturers trading blows and rolling out new iterations within a short time span.

Because consumer purchasing habits demand a constant overturn of products and technology, vendors have reportedly begun placing short-term orders with their suppliers to ensure they do not end up with a surplus of outdated materials. In years past, these same organizations would have likely signed longer contracts with suppliers that would have provided a constant flow of reliable materials to build their products.

Component availability concerns hit the industrial sector
This shift could have consequences beyond the consumer electronics market, potentially affecting the availability of components for industrial equipment. With suppliers turning over their wares more frequently, industrial organizations have to be more discerning when choosing their component providers so as not to get stuck with incompatible parts down the line. A key consideration in this regard should be the status of a supplier's bill of materials. As IndustryWeek contributor Tom Shoemaker noted, BOMs​ are essential to accurately tracking precisely which components are included in a particular piece of equipment. By purchasing from vendors with locked BOMs, industrial companies can ensure that their suppliers will continue to reliably provide the same critical, high-quality parts whenever needed.

Maintaining a consistent flow of supplies is particularly important for industrial operations as these businesses increasingly rely on embedded systems. These devices are incredibly complex and typically require a number of various sensitive components to operate in harmony in order for the larger unit to work properly. If a single part becomes unavailable, it could translate into costly industrial disruptions and inoperable machinery.

When choosing an industrial-grade solid state drive, for instance, businesses should be sure they purchase from a vendor with a locked BOM, so they can rest easy knowing that the product will continue to be compatible with critical systems. DIGISTOR SSD solutions offer the right combination of performance and reliability needed to keep industrial equipment running optimally for years to come. In addition, DIGISTOR's line of high-quality SSD drives are durable enough to handle the rigors of an industrial environment, capable of weathering extreme temperature variations and withstanding sharp vibrations. In these inhospitable environments, critical equipment needs to be able to provide years of service, and with its rugged durability and locked BOM, a DIGISTOR industrial-strength SSD will come through time and again.

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