We are excited to introduce the new Seeed Fusion One-Stop-Prototyping PCBA Service V1.1 to all of our users. It is not just a new version of one function; it consists of a complete series of improvements. Fusion PCBA provides a real one stop prototyping service, which covers online quotation, parts sourcing, PCB fabrication and assembly. Fusion PCBA caters for quantities even as low as 1 piece and can help engineers verify prototypes at affordable prices without sacrificing excessive resources. That is the reason why Fusion PCBA was established in the first place, to help more makers smoothen the process of turning a design into a real product, and will always be the goal that our team devotes themselves to.
In the past year, we have been collecting feedback from our users regarding our PCBA service. Based on this, we have made the following improvements in V1.1.
- 1 1. Shorten the lead-time from 30 working days to 18 working days
- 2 2. Smoothen the PCBA online experience.
- 3 3. Enhance assembly capabilities
- 4 4. Larger large batch production, friendlier small batch production
- 5 5. Testing service available
- 6 6. Continuously updating the Seeed OPL such as importing Particle’s components
- 7 7. More transparent online quotation
1. Shorten the lead-time from 30 working days to 18 working days
In the very beginning, the lead-time for PCBA was quite unstable, varying from 30 to 40 working days due to complications in sourcing components externally. 90% of Fusion PCBA orders consist of small volumes of about 1-10 boards, each with at around 20 different parts, which increases the difficulty in sourcing parts.
From 2017, we have improved our supply chain system to make sure Fusion PCBA orders can be taken good care of and it works. The average lead-time for PCBA orders with all parts sourced from Seeed’s OPL is 6 working days, and the average lead-time with non-OPL parts is now only 18 working days.
2. Smoothen the PCBA online experience.
For PCBA quotations, we get our component prices directly from third-party APIs but sometimes the system cannot recognize and match some of the less common parts, which puts a stop on the entire order.
From 2017, we have adopted a new system which has more tolerance for such orders and allows an engineer to intervene and assist in the quotation process directly.
3. Enhance assembly capabilities
In response to the increase demand, our factory has upgraded its capabilities for Fusion PCBA service. Now we are able to assemble Ball Grid Arrays (BGA) of 0.25mm pitch with X-ray testing, passive components with packages as small as 01005 size and fine pitch components as small as 0.38mm pitch.
4. Larger large batch production, friendlier small batch production
Fusion PCBA first started the assembly service only for orders less than 30 pieces. With procedural improvements, we have enlarged our capabilities to cover quantities of up to 8000 pieces. We have also adjusted our online calculator to make sure the price is friendly towards small batch production, such as decreasing the assembly cost to only $0.01 per component and reducing the sales margin for small batch assembly.
5. Testing service available
If you upload your test plan, you will get a quotation with functional testing in 24 hours, which is possible for Fusion PCBA service. To make Fusion PCBA service more practical, we have made our functional test service available since this October. As well as functional tests, we also provide x-ray inspection, AOI testing and in-circuit testing.
6. Continuously updating the Seeed OPL such as importing Particle’s components
Seeed’s OPL (Open Part Library) is a catalogue of Seeed’s in-stock components available immediately for assembly. We have made it open sourced for the greater benefit of the community, since it will help save time and money using these parts, especially for prototyping. We have been trying to update the library based on the community’s needs, which lead to our cooperation with Particle.
We have a lot of customers from the IoT industry and many of them are using Particle’s WiFi modules for their projects. If they send the components from the USA for assembly, it will lengthen the lead time to 20 or 30 days. In addition, it is quite expensive for them to have PCB fabrication and assembly done locally, which is out of many hobbyists’ and start-ups’ budgets. It can be difficult to find a balance between time and costs. The Seeed Fusion team has heard stories from some of our customers and so we decided to cooperate with Particle to remedy the situation.
7. More transparent online quotation
We have improved our calculation system to make the online quotation more transparent for our customers. PCBA quotations consist of the following parts, PCB cost, set up fee, Consumptive Material Cost, Assembly Cost, Component Cost and operation fee.
This is just the first step in improving Fusion PCBA service and we will keep on improving the quality and providing the best service for our users. Stay tuned! There will be more new and exciting updates to come. If you have any ideas or suggestions regarding Seeed Fusion PCBA service, we invite you to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.