Coronavirus: This IIT-Delhi alumni startup develops camera to detect face masks, social distancing in crowded places
The Indian startup ecosystem has stood up in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic by providing various technological solutions. One of them is Noida-based Vehant Technologies which has developed a solution to ensure individuals are following social distancing norms, including wearing face masks in public during the pandemic.
The Indian government has mandated these rules to slow down the spread of the disease in the community. As of Wednesday, the number of cases in India stood at 107,789, according to Worldometer, a real-time population tracker.
The Noida-headquartered startup has come out with a camera named FebriEye for COVID-19 which can detect face masks, social distancing, and body temperature of individuals. In fact, the camera system also rings an alarm in case of any deviations.
“FebriEye’s face mask detection feature uses visible streams from the camera combined with ‘artificial intelligence (AI) techniques’ to detect and generate an alert for people not wearing face masks. A user-friendly interface allows monitoring and review of alerts generated by the system,” tells Kapil Badreja, Co-Founder and CEO of Vehant Technologies, to YourStory.
Kapil says that FebriEye can be installed in government buildings, private complexes, IT parks, hotels, airports, railway stations, bus stations, places of worship, etc., to ensure that individuals entering the premises don’t have a high fever, and people are following the norms.
The product also detects, through its AI-based algorithms, whether a person is wearing a face cover (mask), as it will be mandatory in the coming days till a clear solution is available to tackle the pandemic.
“It also detects social distancing between people,” Kapil says, adding that various state governments like Telangana are already exploring the solution.
The startup’s product costs anywhere between Rs 5 and 7 lakh per unit. “We launched the product around April-end, and have 200 queries in the last two weeks. We hope to convert at least 30 to 40 percent of those queries positively,” Kapil tells YourStory.
Vehant Technologies was started by IIT-Delhi alumni Anoop G Prabhu and Kapil Bardeja in 2005. Initially, the startup was started at the IIT-Delhi incubator, along with five professors of Computer Sciences and Engineering department.
“Our motivation was to develop indigenous products and solutions out of India in the areas of computer vision and image processing, especially in security and surveillance,” says the co-founder.
Vehant started building an under-vehicle scanning system that was imported in the country till now. It was a strategic necessity for India to have these security products made in the country. Over the last nine years, it has supplied and installed around 800 units in India along with 12 other countries in Europe and Indonesia.
“We added an AI-based automated number plate reading system which morphed into Trafficmon – Traffic Enforcement and Management System – which we have now deployed in 25 smart cities across India. In 2015, we added x-ray baggage scanners to our portfolio, and have grabbed 25 percent market share in the last two years, and have successfully sold to airports too,” says Kapil.
The Noida-based startup recently incorporated an office in Jakarta and The Netherlands for the expansion of its thermal and AI products in the European and Southeast Asian markets.
It is also looking for external funding to the tune of $10 million for its global expansion in the existing, as well as newer markets. “We hope to get at least 20 percent of our revenue from export markets in the next 24 months,” Kapil concludes.
Edited by Suman Singh