BeBop Sensors, a wearable sensor technology company created by musical instrument inventor Keith McMillen and KMI, announced their first product, the BeBop Wearable Smart Fabric Sensor, the first and only ultra thin wearable smart fabric sensor that measures all aspects of physicality, including bend, location, motion, rotation, angle, and torque. Employing BeBop’s patented proprietary Monolithic Fabric Sensor Technology, BeBop fabric sensors continuously provide real-time reporting on force, x/y location, bend, twist, size, stretch and motion for markets, including clothing and protective wear, shoes, healthcare devices, athletic equipment, automotive, robotics, aerospace, gaming, biometrics, prosthetics, recycling monitors and appliance markets.
Smart Fabric Sensor Solutions Provide 3D Maps of Data
Unlike other wearable sensors on the market today that only measure physiology (EKG, EMG), electrical conductivity or breathing, BeBop measures actual physicality to sense and display 3D maps of data. Fundamental, tested, and extensible with over a million sensors already in daily use through KMI’s musical instrument products, BeBop’s Monolithic Fabric Sensors integrate sensors, traces, and electronics into a single piece of fabric to provide greater sensitivity, resolution, range of deployment, and robustness -- all with a tiny size.
Created for the rapidly-growing wearable technology market, BeBop sensor technology was created after six years of developing smart fabric sensors for more expressive musical instruments, such as KMI’s popular QuNexus and QuNeo keyboards. After being approached by numerous companies requesting KMI’s fabric sensor technology, KMI launched spin-off company BeBop Sensors to fulfill the demand.
“BeBop is a natural step for 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 Keith McMillen, Founder, KMI and BeBop Sensors. “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 for our non-musical customers as we expand into the wearables market.”
BeBop OEM Turnkey Offerings Now Available
BeBop is now offering custom turnkey sensor solutions for OEMs to incorporate into their products, ranging from basic sensors to complete wireless solutions with advanced power management. Visualization programs for any design with an easily-modified SDK (Software Developer’s Kit) allows manufacturers to create custom apps by choosing from a variety of 2D and 3D representations and colors or by driving the BeBop data 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.”