If, during a product launch at a trade fair, it becomes clear to one of our customers that they have catapulted themselves ahead of the competition with a major leap in development, it is undeniably a great form of recognition. Such a statement illustrates in a striking way what the UXMA value proposition entails: We identify with a user-centered and design-driven approach, we identify potential for the sustainable market success of our clients and ensure rapid implementation in compact and methodical project work. In this specific case, we were responsible for the holistic product development of the user interfaces in the hardware and software area for the market leader for coating and laminating systems: KROENERT GmbH & Co. KG
- Kick-off workshop and UI/ID ideation
- Comprehensive requirements analysis
- Holistic product development of the user interfaces in hardware and software
- Prototyping and implementation of interaction concept as well as look and feel
- Adaptation to other system types
- Development of an extensive design library
- Development of a plug-in application architecture based on VisiWin 7.2, .NET, WPF, C#
- Development and implementation of the data and model driven concept for module-based project planning
- Implementation of the concepts of the development template for LABCO-based machines
- Implementation of the software connection and integration of a rotary pushbutton encoder as an additional input option
From a technology benchmark to a UX benchmark
The coating machines from KROENERT are undisputedly regarded as the benchmark of the industry. Not long ago, however, the operation of the machines was thought to no longer do justice to the technological class of the systems. In other words, a modern HMI was needed to underline the company's role as market leader.
Team UXMA came into play to resolve this issue and the aim switched from contemporary to pioneering. Together with our customer, we have developed KROENERT ProLine, a line operating system that sets the benchmark itself and thus puts the overall product far ahead of the competition.
The KROENERT ProLine is composed of an ergonomic and scalable workspace and the user interface:
The panel: Ergonomic workspace
- Stand-alone solution of the panel (support arm connection or directly to the machine)
- Can be combined and expanded with control panel
- Scalable work and function area (easy adaptation of monitors, tablets or terminal boards)
- Clear console work area with uniform arrangement of important buttons and switches
- Movable and tiltable touch-panel holder
- Two width variants: 600 mm, 1,200 mm
The user interface: Optimal status overview
- Dashboard with individual views and fast navigation
- Portrait format for clear visualizations
- Demand-controlled fade-in and fade-out of information
- Sequence scenarios for guided operation of standardized routine operating steps
- Applications or micro services for optional functions and special extensions
- Configurable recording of data trends
- Comprehensive formula management
We make no secret of our recipe for success: it is essential to record and understand the needs of the users in detail and not to lose sight of them at any stage of the development process. Whether control, maintenance or fault diagnosis - the machine operators of a KROENERT system must be able to act quickly and effectively in every situation. In an extensive needs analysis and ideation phase, we adopted this user perspective and rethought the interaction concept for the entire product family: ProLine opens up a maximum of user-oriented, intuitive operability, ergonomics, expandability and safety. Touch gestures enable users to quickly navigate through the image, rotary encoders are used to support image navigation and robust hardware push-buttons enable fast, direct intervention in the system control. The data- and model-driven concept for module-based project planning, which is hidden behind the user interface on the software side, enables an unimaginable degree of flexibility in the individual composition of the components and data streams to be displayed. This modular system combines a high degree of individualization through freely configurable dashboards, different navigation paths and different work views with a consistent operating philosophy and a uniform look & feel.
In the course of the project work, our UXMA team was able to call on the entire skillset in UX/UI design, industrial engineering and software development in the service of the user experience. This interdisciplinary trio makes KROENERT ProLine something very special. We were able to fully contribute our expertise from conception to implementation in the haptic as well as digital context. In this way, together with our client, we have achieved a result "as if it was made from one casting". For the user, far ahead of the competition. Despite this development lead, the journey continues: KROENERT ProLine will continue to grow as a platform and will be able to offer digital and data-based services and additional applications in the future. The integration of new functionalities in the form of apps is already in preparation, for example from energy and maintenance management, communication options and other service connections. We look forward to further cooperation!