A smart insole for diabetics, a sustainable commute solution offering incentives to commuters, and a secure box for storing bicycles have been named as the winners of Tributech Solutions’ inaugural competition to uncover the next generation of cellular IoT innovators.
The Austrian IoT technology company recently held the ‘Smart Product Challenge for IoT Solutions’ with the support and sponsorship of Nordic Semiconductor, Microsoft, Infineon, and Magenta Telekom. Each entrant received a free smart product development kit including Tributech’s nRF9160 SiP-powered ‘Tributech OEM module’, Nordic’s nRF52840 DK, and Infineon's Shield2Go sensors.
Ten selected finalists pitched their idea for a smart and secure product using innovative sensor hardware and connectivity technologies to a jury of experts comprising Tributech, Nordic, and fellow sponsor companies. At the conclusion of the pitching event, sendance, Carployee, and JUHUU BikeBox were declared the winners. The winners receive a share of a €33,000 ($37,000) prize pool, additional smart project development kits, as well as a free one year subscription to Tributech’s IoT and Data Platform.
sendance is a spin-off from the LIT Soft Materials Lab at Johannes Kepler University, Linz in Austria. The company has developed ‘sendance-grid’, a network of sensors with conformable connections that can be produced in a flat, 2D shape and then applied to the complex surface of 3D printed wearables. The first application for the product is custom made orthotics—such as diabetic insoles or prosthesis shafts—that when embedded with pressure, temperature or humidity sensors, for example, could support patients and their physicians and help prevent diabetic ulcers and sores. Wireless connectivity could provide users and doctors with near real time feedback to improve the efficiency and safety of orthotic therapy.
Carployee, part of U.S.-based RideAmigos, is developing a tracking solution as part of its ‘Pave Commute’ app that would provide stakeholders in the commuter mobility supply chain—such as employers, local governments, transit agencies, and micromobility companies—access to a rich set of data that could be used to reward commuters for making transport choices that reduce congestion, emissions, and parking costs. At the same time the data could be used by stakeholders to optimize transportation options and mobility choices for commuters. The blockchain-based data market would consist of commuters earning tokens for providing mobility data, while data-accessing parties would burn tokens to access the information. Data can be provided via a smartphone or through a dedicated cellular IoT-powered device for higher-value rewards. The reward amount will depend on data quality and sustainability of the transport mode. Corporate and municipal participants can boost the rewards for certain desirable behavior, for example rewards for people using public transit over private travel.
JUHUU BikeBox is also aiming to promote sustainability and reduce traffic congestion and emissions with the development of its winning solution, ‘BikeBoxes’. BikeBoxes are designed to encourage commuters to use their bicycles rather than cars to commute to work or to their nearest transport hub by providing them a means to securely store their bicycle without fear of it being stolen or vandalized. The user can open and unlock the BikeBox via a smartphone app and are charged for the time their bicycle is safely stored. The wireless connectivity enables over-the-air firmware updates and remote monitoring of the alarm system.
“Nordic Semiconductor congratulates all the winners and participants of Tributech’s Smart Product Challenge for their commitment and dedication to IoT innovation, a commitment Nordic shares,” says Thomas Page, Regional Sales Director, Nordic Semiconductor, and a member of the contest expert jury. “It is particularly encouraging to see not only technically ingenious solutions, but also solutions that contribute to sustainability, minimize our footprint on the environment, and promote efficient resource usage. This is a business philosophy Nordic Semiconductor supports wholeheartedly.”