One of the products featured at the automotive specialty products trade event at the Specialty Equipment Market Association Show in Las Vegas this year could be on the roads as early as next spring to help deliver products manufactured in Henry County.
Eastman – a company with two manufacturing sites in the area, Fieldale and Martinsville – recently announced that one of its subsidies, Eastman Performance Films, LLC, created a patent-pending, analytics-based software platform that goes beyond cutting software to support business operations, integrating desktop and mobile access for remarkable user freedom.
They call this automotive film technology Core by Eastman Performance Films, LLC.
Using Core, dealers offering window tints and automotive film installation services simply place each Vehicle Identification Number into the program. The make, model and year of that vehicle – along with its standard dimensions for various car parts – appears on the screen, according to a demonstration video released by the company earlier this month.
Core provides users with both a pattern and flexibility to change various features for precision-cut window tints and automotive films.
“Core is a reinvention of film-cutting software,” said Darrell Reed, commercial director for Eastman. “Industry-leading capabilities offered by Core were created by Eastman in response to needs from our customers. The result is a solution able to open up flexibility and connectivity far beyond anything previously offered in the marketplace.”
Reed expressed that Eastman’s customers are continually seeking ways to run their businesses more efficiently. As the company designed Core, engineers sought to create a solution that was easy to use and could help improve how their consumers run their businesses.
One innovation involved creating a mobile app, which allows users to scan a VIN and reduces the need to be in front of a desktop or laptop computer to look up vehicle patterns, see vehicles in their daily workflow or help with viewing information to install window tint and paint protection film products more efficiently on a vehicle.
“It certainly reduces the possibility for human error. It is a great time saver for our customers,” Reed said. “The mobile app does so much more than scan VIN numbers, but with this specific feature, customers can check on patterns, add customer orders into their workflow more productively and with more freedom, since our customers do not need to be in their shops – or even next to their customer’s car – to do so, since all they need is a picture of the VIN to get their work orders rolling.”
The program is also available on multiple operating systems and devices.
“One of the groundbreaking features about Core is its technological flexibility – Core desktop works with Mac and PC and the mobile app works with iOS and Android operating systems,” Reed said. “Core desktop is also able to communicate with the most popular plotters.”
The company also asks for feedback from those using Core. Leveraging installation insights from customers around the world allows consumers to share information with one another to improve the speed and accuracy with which they install window tint and paint protection film products.
Core software creation is an important step in a plan to invest in digital products throughout the Eastman portfolio of businesses. Eastman’s launch of this software represents commitment to the kind of deep, integrated support that’s essential to customer success and extends past physical goods, the company said.
“Digital products like Core represent an important opportunity to help our customers win,” said Aldo Noseda, Eastman’s vice-president and chief information officer. “I am excited about the combination of our digital capabilities and our unique market and application knowledge in delivering differentiated, specialty solutions.”
Noseda further expressed that the new digital product complemented Eastman’s physical product, which helped customers globally.
“In addition Eastman is investing in capabilities to improve our own operations and better connect our industry,” Noseda said. “The investments we’ve made this year in digital have strengthened many areas, including the example of our manufacturing plants, Fieldale and Martinsville.”
Eastman’s Patriot Centre in Martinsville produces window film for automotive and architectural use.
Eastman’s Fieldale operation is a major manufacturer for the performance films division, producing window film sold under Eastman’s portfolio of brands. The site dyes base film and ultraviolet weatherable films, evaporation metalizes, sputter coats, provides sophisticated protecting top coating and laminates multiple combination layers of components.
The introduction of Core is the most recent innovation from Eastman, a company that continually brings new ideas to the market.
“There’s no secret sauce necessarily. Our teams enjoy engaging with customers – it fuels the teams’ energy and creativity. With our relentless focus on our customers and markets, it’s part of our DNA to continue to innovate,” Reed said. “The markets we participate in keep changing, so we need to keep innovating to serve our customers’ needs better, every day.”
Core is compatible with Eastman automotive film brands LLumar and SunTek for the initial North America launch in spring 2020. Dealers currently using PrecisionCut and TruCut systems can expect support in transitioning to the expanded features and mobile device connectivity offered by Core.
Customers’ needs are built into Core software and its future development. A dedicated team of experts will continually collect input and launch enhancements.