Earlier last year, gesture technology was making ripples everywhere when Intel acquired Omek, and Apple pocketed Primesense; Israeli startups were once again in the news. Well closer home, and on the TechSparks 2013 stage, the Trutech boys – Abhinav and Raghav Aggarwal also had the Mumbai audience in a spell as they demoed the working of their gesture-based technology, The Fluid Motion.
So when I recently met these young geniuses in their office in Mumbai, I was not too surprised that they could control the 50-inch TV screens in their office with the clap of their hands; or that lights turned on automatically and blinds went up by itself in their office conference room. The average age of these founders is 24 years, and YourStory says these young lads are surely to be watched out for.
Here is a snapshot of their achievements so far:
Trutech Webs recently demoed how gestures can control drones, when Hero Moto Corp MD Pawan Munjal used their technology to unveil the Hastur bike at Auto Expo Delhi 2014. Mr. Munjal gestured for the cloth covering the bike to be taken off, and out came the Trutech drones to do it(See video below). “This is the first ever of its kind worldwide involving drones and gesture control, the launch is based on gesture control technology,” explains Abhinav. Both are self-taught coders, who decided to build their own enterprise rather than do their MBA.
The Fluid Motion technology is available in two variants – the far range variety, where products can be controlled using gestures from 10-15 feet distance; and the close range variety, as used in the Auto Expo, where controls are within the range of two feet to a meter. Abhinav says they are working closely with Qualcomm and Intel to leverage the gesture technology in their areas of business.
Besides Hero Moto Corp, Toyota also used their gesture technology to demo at the Auto Expo. Trutech Webs is working with other companies in the auto sector to do launch events, be part of their PR activities and their technology is being used in car showrooms. Many corporate such as Reliance Industries are using the Fluid Motion technology in its boardrooms.
Another big leap is the foray by Trutech into home automation. The youngsters are developing a box which can be used to control all the gadgets in the house. “Basically anything that is remote controlled can now be controlled using gesture and voice. We have made a device box, which can be connected to all gadgets in a house and used for home automation,” explains Abhinav. To manufacture these boxes, Trutech is setting up a manufacturing facility at Patalganga near Navi Mumbai.
Trutech is also working on developing software, which can be used by architects to make their drawings. “Architects are using The Fluid Motion technology to create architecture models using gestures. Now they can make design models using gestures,” says Abhinav.
The last and most recent foray by Trutech is into gesture controlled drones — where drones can be controlled by gestures for delivering small parcels within a particular area.
On the B2C side, Trutech is building a whole lot of apps. They have already released the Fluid Photo app for iOS, which can be used to control alarms set on the iPad. And on the Android side, they are working on developing OS level control of Android devices. Predictably, OEMs are quite interested in the gesture technology and Abhinav says they are working with few OEMs who want to incorporate gesture technology in their devices. “Some gestures are based on sensors, which helps give more accuracy while using devices. Our technology can also use only cameras to control gestures, and companies are interested in exploring both,” he says.
Trutech is also creating a hardware component, which will allow the Fluid Motion technology to be embedded within laptops. This is the close range product that can be used in both tablets and laptops. At present, the close range Fluid Motion device is being sold externally as a hardware component that can be mounted on top of the PC, just like a webcam. The devices are priced between $300 and $400, and Abhinav claims they have sold over 1,000 pieces of the product mostly to developers who want to experiment with the technology.
While doing all this, Trutech continues to be a lean team of 25 people, who are hired from across the board and put through eight to10 rounds of internal testing. It’s not surprising therefore, that iLiftOff — the online testing platform developed by Trutech is being used by Deloitte to do all its recruitments pan-India. Another big user of the platform is the Mumbai University which is using iLiftOff to conduct entrance tests for its courses.
Learning Management System (LMS), which was the first product built by Trutech, is being used by over 250,000 students across 300 colleges in India, the US and UK. As a company, they have moved from Cloud to gestures and now even into production of hardware. So where do they see themselves going forward? “We always want to be known as a product company and build platforms which are based on technology and are all about innovation. Cloud software is currently our biggest contributor, gesture and hardware is yet to start giving returns,” says Abhinav.
Trutech enabled drones at Auto Expo Delhi: