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Manufacturer invests in augmented reality to boost customer service

Local company plans to launch smart glasses technology in July

Julabo USA, a manufacturer of temperature-control products with U.S. headquarters in Hanover Township, Lehigh County, is planning to begin using an augmented-reality tool this summer in a partnership with Atheer, a company in Santa Clara, California.

Julabo recently invested in smart glasses technology that uses augmented reality. – Submitted

The tool combines AR smart glasses with Atheer’s software platform. Together, they will allow Julabo’s service technicians to remotely detect and diagnose problems with equipment or products so technicians on-site can make repairs more quickly.

Julabo began introducing its employees last month, with about 12 employees using them now in a testing phase, said Dirk Frese, vice president of sales and marketing at Julabo.

“More and more companies are adopting this technology,” he said.

Frese declined to disclose the cost of the technology.

Julabo will fully implement the technology in July and expects it to lead to better service, Frese said.

If technicians can speed up repair times using the smart glasses, it would shorten downtimes for its customers by somewhere between 40 percent and 60 percent, Frese said.

Julabo is calling the product LucaVision, inspired by the company’s frog mascot, Luca. Frese said the name is fitting because frogs can see in all directions.

Frese said he learned about the technology after seeing it in practice at a Porsche Logistics service facility in Palmer Township, where technicians fix Porsches.

Porsche Cars North America is an Atheer customer and has started using AR technology at Porsche dealerships across the country.

The technology connects technicians at a dealership with remote experts for a live interaction that promises to shorten service resolution times by up to 40 percent, said Geof Wheelwright, director of communications and marketing for Atheer.

Julabo has similar goals.

The company’s products serve a variety of industries and include refrigerated circulators, temperature control systems, water baths, coolers and accessories.

“If you have temperature control equipment and it’s not working, then that can have some serious impacts,” Wheelwright said. “To get that service more quickly helps the customers.”

 

 

Brian Pedersen
Reporter Brian Pedersen covers construction, development, warehousing and real estate and keeps you up to date on the changing landscape of our community. He can be reached at brianp@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 4108. Follow him on Twitter @BrianLehigh.

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