BeBop Sensors Launches Smart Wearable Technology
Keith McMillen announced today that he has launched BeBop Sensors, Inc. to offer sensor expertise to the rapidly-growing wearables market. After six years of developing smart fabric sensors for his musical instrument company, Keith McMillen Instruments (KMI), McMillen stated: “We were approached by so many companies who needed real solutions that we started BeBop to provide proven wearable sensor technology to OEMs”.
Based On Proprietary Monolithic Fabric Sensor Technology
BeBop uses a proprietary Monolithic Fabric Sensor Technology that integrates all of the sensors, traces and electronics into a single piece of fabric. This approach affords greater sensitivity, resolution, range of deployment and fantastic robustness with diminutive size. Different than other wearables that measure physiology (EKG, EMG), BeBop measures physicality. BeBop technology senses and displays 3D maps of pressure, bend, location, motion, rotation, angle, and torsion.
BeBop has released a variety of solutions ready for integration into new wearable products, including the following:
- Fabric sleeve controllers for jackets or shirts to answer calls, adjust volume or select songs on a cell phone – all while the device remains in the user’s pocket.
- Shoe insoles 1 mm thick to measure gait, pressure and flexure of toes and feet.
- Planar, spherical or cylindrical geometries to be used as pressure maps, head sensors or handles of athletic equipment.
The technology is fundamental, tested and extensible.
“This is a natural step from KMI, where we have diligently tuned fabrics, geometries, and production processes allowing us to ship over 1 million sensors to some of the most demanding musicians in the world,” said McMillen. “All musical instruments are essentially sensors with forms of acoustic processing attached. The same care and creativity used to build our instruments will serve well our non-musical customers as we expand into the wearables market.”
BeBop provides custom turnkey sensor solutions for OEMs to incorporate into their products. Solutions can range from basic sensors to complete wireless solutions with advanced power management. Visualization programs for any geometry with an easily-modified SDK allows manufacturers to create custom apps by choosing from an array of 2D and 3D representations and color palettes or by driving the BeBop data feed into whole new applications.
“Good designs get the job done, great designs strive for an elegance and simplicity that will make the integration of wearable computing a seamless part of everyday life”, said McMillen.
When McMillen created a foot controller allowing disabled people complete control of a computer, Forbes reported: “In 1984, Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs made the computer mouse mainstream. In 2010, Microsoft introduced the Kinect, allowing computer gamers to control video games by moving their bodies. And on June 21, 2011, Keith McMillen Instruments introduced a gadget that lets you use your computer with your feet.”
About BeBop Sensors
BeBop uses smart fabrics to create elegant sensor solutions for OEMs with its patented technology. Where things or people interact, BeBop sensors comprehend force, location, size, weight, shape and presence across any size, resolution and geometry. BeBop technology is robust and proven with over a million sensors already in daily use. Based in Berkeley, California, BeBop Sensors make things knowable for product designers and visionaries.