We have followed the Austrian ivii team throughout the whole ChallengeUp! 2016 IoT accelerator program and would now like to present to you the co-founder Nicolaos Tsirigotis.
Nicolas, can you please provide more details about your startup and solution? How was that connected to “ChallengeUp!”?
Our motto is: “One-click support – just one click away”. ivii.worker is an enterprise-grade system consisting of a headset, a vest with a portable connected PC, and rechargeable batteries. This is what the local engineer needs to wear to enter the IoT world and expand the experts’ know-how by overcoming language barriers and geographical distances.
The headset allows clear augmented communication with sound and pictures. The information is displayed across the entire field of vision, and, as a result, the eyes never need to glance away from the area of activity so the engineer can fully concentrate on the work at hand.
Imagine you are at a remote location responsible for the operation of a machine that breaks down! What would you do? Grab the mobile phone and ask for help? No!! You activate the ivii.worker and you become the “eyes and the hands” of the experts who bring the machine back to life in no time at all, saving the day as well as the “money”!
The reason why we wanted to participate in ChallengeUp! was to be a part of the ecosystem of the three market leaders: Deutsche Telekom, Cisco, and Intel. We wanted, and managed, to be presented worldwide through their sales channels.
During the ChallengeUp! program, we got a clear picture of the complexity of huge corporate companies. At the same time, we met people who believed in us and saw how we could enable their existing business portfolio with our knowledge, our expertise, and our products in intelligent visual image identification.
The ChallengeUp! mentors are great technology specialists with international sales experience. For example, thanks to our common presence with the OTE sales team (the Deutsche Telekom Group’s Greek subsidiary) at the Posidonia 2016 event in Greece, the most prestigious maritime event worldwide, we were directly connected to the stakeholders of the shipping sector. During the event, our future customers had the opportunity to see live demonstrations of our solution and discuss their specific needs with us. Thanks to the customers’ feedback and our mentors’ business expertise, we took our product development one step further and created new, profitable business models.
You always sound so passionate about what you do with ivii. Does that mean that ivii is the center of your everyday life?
ivii is a small startup company. On the one hand, this means that we are a flexible group of people working in an easygoing atmosphere. We don’t have complex processes, only our passion for what we are doing, which makes our collaboration more efficient. On the other hand, choosing the path of entrepreneurship means being on the run 24/7, especially when you are trying to scale up, like we are. It is true, ever since Peter Stelzer and I co-founded ivii, we realized there is no day and night anymore.
That’s why it is important to me to have some time on my own, to be me and myself, so that I can get disconnected, separated. Since I am a sportsman, I always try to find some time to go running, even during my business trips. After a long day of meetings, just a short run through the old town of Barcelona, for example after the Mobile Congress, can loosen me up, clear my mind, get me inspired, allow me to be 100 percent concentrated on new creative ideas.
Your next plans include big data on top of augmented collaboration. Explain to us what it’s about and what the synergies of these two trends could be?
Virtual information is seamlessly blended with reality on the see-through display, while the onsite engineer is in contact with the experts through the headset. Augmented digitized information is integrated within the videostream on multipoint devices all over the world by the experts. The necessary information appears right on the see-through display. The onsite engineer can immediately apply this knowledge to solve the problem at hand. This results in learning retention, which has a positive effect on our customer satisfaction, and, at the same time, builds up a knowledge database (big data).
We intend to provide personalized and customized data analysis in order to enable remote and predictive maintenance on a case-by-case basis. To do so, we will start by offering benchmarking and statistics as a service to the industry. In the near future, it is the combination of both augmented collaboration and appropriate knowledge bases that will solve the problem, improving the value chain of our B2B industrial customers all over the world! We create new opportunities in service support!
More information about ivii online: www.ivii.eu