Data I/O is the leader in the device programming industry, manufacturing semiconductor device handling and programming systems to the automotive electronics, wireless and consumer product industries. Automotive Industries (AI) spoke to Harald Weigelt, VP, Worldwide Sales and Marketing, Data I/O Corporation.
AI: How successful has Data I/O been with the automotive industry in Europe, Asia and the Americas?
Weigelt: The company has long operated in these continents and has developed a world-class customer base of industry leaders. We have installed hundreds of automated handling/programming systems, many of them with automotive companies. For some time, the prevailing applications in Europe have been automotive in nature. We are connected with the automotive design centers at the semiconductor manufacturing companies.
AI: What can Data I/O offer customers of Renesas and NEC microcontrollers as compared to your competitors?
Weigelt: Data I/O has long-standing preferred partnerships with the leading device makers. We are informed of new devices and technologies before they are released to the marketplace. Our semiconductor partners also inform us of new designs so that we can assist those customers transitioning their early design work to production volumes. Our FlashCORE technology is optimized for Flash memory and microcontroller devices.
AI: Tell us about Data I/O’s new strategies and products in programmable electronics for the automotive industry.
Weigelt: Data I/O’s automotive offerings are far more than just device programming, but are about offering complete solutions. The company is recognized for providing far more application support than processing devices through a handling station. Our customer needs for quality, traceability, and configuration management are supported in a number of application software programs that are included in our automotive systems.
AI: Tell us about Data I/O’s device programming solutions for the automotive industry.
Weigelt: Data I/O offers a range of automated solutions that support different customer volume and mix requirements, including small desktop systems to larger offline systems that handle a variety of device media. It is the only solutions provider with an automated inline solution that connects directly to the SMT placement machine for mounting devices on PCB assemblies. These systems can be operated locally or network attached and monitored.
AI: Give examples of how Data I/O has managed to adapt products to regional applications.
Weigelt: At a Portuguese automotive manufacturer, the DVD player storage application changed from a hard drive to a high density memory chipset. The Data I/O automated system was the most efficient way for operators to load data files to the chipset media.
An Austrian automotive electronics producer was able to achieve a dramatic reduction of work in process inventory and logistics for payback <90 days because the Data I/O automated handling system uptime was so high that WIP was not required for production cycle variations.
At a German R&D headquarters, the concern for protection of intellectual property meant the data files were encrypted by headquarters and de-crypted on the Data I/O production system at the point of manufacture.
At an American automotive manufacturing company, the customer offloaded program/test functions from ATE systems to Data I/O offline systems to free up process capacity on expensive ATE systems.
At a German automotive producer with high speed SMT lines, Data I/O’s JIT inline programming systems were mounted directly on the component placement machines to replace the previous offline process and reduce inventory float.
AI: How is Data I/O positioned for future growth with automotive manufacturers?
Weigelt: The vast majority of our customers are repeat users of our automated systems. Data I/O is the preferred provider among the industry leaders and is expanding system installations among different groups within our customer organizations.