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With Teiimo we have a new player in the world’s wearable and conformable electronics game. The international start-up, headquartered in Southern Germany and a base in Bristol, UK, offers high quality, innovative products and serves as a link between research and industry, developing components and consulting on products in the industrialisation of conformable electronics. “We want to see more advanced and commercially viable products that are based on conformable electronics and have applications in more market sectors,” says Markus Strecker, CEO and founder of Teiimo.
“Conformable electronics can be used to conquer challenges in the widest range of industries and help meet consumer demands. “Research has made great strides in recent years. Unfortunately, you hardly find evidence of this progress in mature commercial products. This is where we step in,” says Strecker.
What is possible is demonstrated with Teiimo’s first product: the iilation jacket. The world’s first smart leather jacket is heated, works as a Bluetooth hands free calling device, can play music, and includes a cell phone charger. The heating elements are highly flexible, very thin, and still extremely robust. The upper heating zone warms the back, goes over the shoulders to the chest, and heats the inside of the collar. The lower heating zone warms the lower back and kidneys; in the ladies’ jacket it also warms the external pockets. For hands free calling, a microphone and two speakers are built into the collar.
A control element is in the left pocket. A mobile app is also in development. The buttons for the Bluetooth system are integrated into the upper part of the left sleeve. The jacket can be powered either by hooking it up to the car’s cigarette lighter, or through its two, integrated, very flat, lightweight, and flexible rechargeable batteries, developed specifically for the jacket. A USB connector in the jacket pocket serves as a cell phone charger.
The jacket was conceived for convertible and classic car drivers.
Fully functional prototypes of the iilation jacket have already been made. To finance the final development stages, Teiimo is launching a campaign on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter. Supporters get the limited edition jacket. The campaign will run from October 9th until November 30th.
The technology that was developed for the iilation jacket can be used in a variety of sectors.
“Conformable electronics can make life a lot easier and often more comfortable,” says Strecker.
Applications in a Wide Variety of Sectors
An important application of conformable electronics is in the booming health care sector. With today’s technology it is possible to help patients with chronic disease by providing them with critical information and sending data directly to their doctors. With the further development of the necessary sensors and the conception of instrumentation as a flexible system that can be worn as clothing, new perspectives and possibilities open up. “With conformables, vital data such as heart rate can be recorded right on the body, by integrating sensory capabilities in a t shirt. That means: maximum comfort for the patient and new possibilities for monitoring and treatment for the doctor,” says Strecker.
In the car industry, there is a trend towards increasingly integrating and combining functions and to design the interior in more innovative ways. At the same time, there is a trend to increasing energy efficiency, and this requires reducing weight. Conformable electronics are thin, flexible, light, and can be integrated in places where it would be difficult or even unthinkable to install conventional electronics, such as lighting accents widely spread over the roof liner.
Teiimo builds on years of experience and pioneering work in wearable electronics
Teiimo was founded by Markus Strecker. He is a pioneer in the wearable electronics sector and has long term experience in the development of such innovative products. Ten years ago he was behind the world’s first communications and entertainment jacket, which was marketed by O’Neill as “the Hub.” Many more products followed, such as the Rosner MP3Blue jacket, the Zegnas Sport Solar-JKT and heated gloves by Bogner.
In the past four years, Strecker worked in the USA as Director of Electrical Engineering for Adidas and oversaw development of the miCoach Elite. MiCoach Elite is now being used by Germany’s national team as well as numerous professional soccer teams, such as the Major League Soccer in the US.
Markus Kaproth is Teiimo director of R&D and partner. The electronics expert specializes in IP design, SOC integration, verification and system security.
Nick Sturge, Director of the Bristol SETsquared Centre, added: “We have a track record in supporting businesses located in Bristol that do business around the world, but also of businesses based abroad that want to be a part of the vibrant Bristol eco-system. Wearable computing is an exciting new area and we expect to see a lot of exciting applications coming through.”
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