How Hindonics’ futuristic technology LifSen will change the way people ‘touch’
The COVID-19 pandemic has made us acutely aware of maintaining hand hygiene and the increased risk of infections spreading through touching contaminated surfaces. But once you have sanitised your hands, masked up and made social distancing a habit, what else can you possibly do to keep the virus at bay?
It is this thought that led a young final year M.Tech student Sumit Kumar Vaish to develop a futuristic device ‘LifSen’ that eliminates the need for physical contact thereby minimising the risk of contact transmission of the dreaded virus. The device may look like it came straight out of a sci-fi movie with a holographic display in mid-air, which can be operated just like any regular touchscreen.
“Being passionate in electronics and embedded systems and with more than 10 years of experience, I started thinking about making a touchless interactive device. With components available around my own garage (electronics lab), I started working on it. Within a week, I managed to make a working basic prototype of a touchless matrix keypad. I got it approved for my M.Tech project by my college National Institute of Electronics and Information Technology, Gorakhpur,” recollects Sumit.
Soon after, Sumit received a grant from DST Nidhi Prayas to convert the idea into a prototype through the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee’s incubation centre. The co-founder, Govind Bharadwaj, who is well connected with the automation industry, joined Sumit to help scale up Technologies.
“As soon as we deployed our first prototype in Delhi, we received another grant TIDE 2.0 through the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur’s incubation centre,” he adds. The working prototype of LifSen is currently installed at IIT Kanpur’s Outreach Center Noida, Dwarka Sector Delhi, which converts the elevator's control into a contactless system effortlessly and at a very low cost.
What sets LifSen apart?
This first-of-a-kind device in India is a combination of a touchless interactive screen integrated with a floating mid-air display. It can be used to convert any existing keypad or touchscreen into a contactless terminal thus minimising the human-machine interaction while keeping the operational aspect the same. From vending kiosks to ATMs, from gaming systems to control panels in the food industry, from the agro industry to medical devices – you name it, and LifSen can easily be integrated with it. What’s more, you can interact with the machine even with gloves on – a feature that is not possible with touchscreens. In fact, the upgraded version of LifSen will be able to help you interact with the 3D display seamlessly.
A Gartner study reveals that by 2023, 50 percent of all major business applications will include at least one type of no-touch experience, such as voice, augmented reality, or virtual reality. According to Research and Markets, the global market for gesture recognition and touchless sensing reached $10.9 billion in 2018 and is expected to be $65.9 billion by 2027. This presents a significant growth opportunity for companies like Hindonics Technologies. This is evident from the support that the company has received from government institutions and private institutions within its first year of operations.
“We received around Rs 70 lakh from different government organisations within a year since we started. NIDHI PRAYAS by Department of Science and Technology, TIDE 2.0 by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Ministry of Education’s National Innovation Contest 2020, Software Technology Parks of India’s Chunauti 2.0, Nidhi4COVID 2.0 by NSTEDB, ICRISAT, Start in UP program by the government of Uttar Pradesh and Nippon Telegraph and Telephone’s NTT DATA CSR fund has helped us reach this stage,” Sumit adds.
This technology could be a game-changer for a number of businesses, especially with the ongoing pandemic. In the short term, touchless interfaces will be necessary for safe indoor environments - from offices to restaurants and retail stores. In the long term, contactless interactions will present a superior user experience, minimising the cognitive load of apps, settings, and passwords.
“We are working on deployment of 100 units in the next two years with post deployment service and warranty,” says Sumit. Going ahead, over the next three years, Hindonics Technologies envisions LifSen to be deployed in all public places like airports, metro stations, and malls making people interact with machines without any physical touch. It is certainly an exciting time for touchless user interfaces, and Hindonics Technologies plans to be at the forefront of delivering this futuristic technology to its existing and prospective clients.