Interview by Marija Butkovic @MarijaButkovic
Marius Janta gives insights into WT | Wearable Technologies, the leading business development and innovation platform in the wearable ecosystem.
Marius, tell us a bit more about WT | Wearable Technologies (WT), your background and your projects so far.
I have worked with WT | Wearable Technologies and its founder CEO Christian Stammel for 1,5 years now. With backgrounds in Sports Science and Technology (PhD), Consumer Affairs (M.Sc.) and experience in product development (W.L. Gore & Associates) and research (Technical University of Munich) I have interdisciplinary knowledge on technology and its human interfaces. This knowledge perfectly fits the WT portfolio and its B2B business development ecosystem, that brings together techpreneurs, forward thinkers and innovators to disrupt industries with WT´s and IoT applications. With this global network we managed to participate in multiple nationally, internationally and industrially funded projects in a little while to integrate technologies and systems in order to push digitization; from the development of next generation smart textiles, the integration of a smart safety assistant for working security to the development of an online platform providing and streamlining data from pro and amateur sports for AI applications. Of course, with the superior aim for WT | Wearable Technologies to grow and to foster our position in the market.
What projects are you working on at the moment?
Besides diverse consulting services, WT is introducing innovation to the industry by cultivating international conferences and tradeshows in partnership with leading trade organizations. Our upcoming WT | Wearable Technologies Conference in San Francisco on July 9-10 is already the 34th edition of the well-established conference series showcasing the bandwidth of the market and most exhilarating products and projects from the entire wearable technologies value chain. We are partnering with SEMICON West there, the leading electronics trade fair in the US with more than 22k visitors.
And on September 11, we will be making a stop in Bangkok, Thailand for the first time. The WT | Wearable Technologies Conference 2019 ASIA will be held concurrently with Medical Fair Thailand, which is the most established platform for the regional medical and health care community. Participants will learn how wearables digitize the healthcare industry and experience one-of-a-kind business development opportunities.
Project-wise we are happy to participate as partners in two funded projects. One by the European Commission called WEAFING. It aims towards the development of so called artificial muscles, i.e. textile actuators for smart textiles that have huge potential in a variety of applications. They are seen to serve as a discrete way of information transfer and are closely related to bodily tasks of movement and physical awareness, e.g. visually impaired people could get information about the environment, people suffering from back pain through computer work could profit from a device that physically teaches posture correction or gamers could get an extended experience.
Another project is called Digital Sports Hub funded by the German Ministry of Economics. It represents a data based digital platform for the development and application of innovative AI Analytic Tools. The main goal is the smart, preventive and individualized improvements of health and performance in society and pro sports. It aims towards the development of an efficiently functioning and collaborating eco-system to generate economic value.
As last example one is financed by an international gas and oil company that see huge potential improving their working security via Wearable Technologies and IoT Applications. In this project we integrate and test a smart, wearable security assistant, that can be used as reminding and training tool. With a local communication network, workers get haptically, visually and auditively fed back information, instructions and warnings on geo-fenced danger zones with wearable devices.
Multiple proposals are in our pipeline, so thankfully a lot to do at the moment – stay tuned for what´s to come.
From your project experience - what do you think are the challenges of being a woman in tech and STEM?
That´s difficult for me to assess, but what I have been told from female friends of mine coming from e.g. electrical of mechanical engineering is acceptance and to be taken seriously. Interestingly, this includes both male and female feedback demonstrating these false stereotypes over both sexes. Surely, men and women have different opinions and perspectives from time to time, personally I think this is positive to view things from wider and more angles, which is important to consider any detail.
In your opinion, what will be the key trends in the tech industry in the next 5 years and where do you see it heading?
What I personally perceive while working within this tech industry are major things, that superior a whole range of products and applications. Better, faster connectivity and changing interfaces. The first allows us to realize much more products and services such as automated driving or AI, which is also true for wearable tech and their ability to do edge computing, i.e. generating, processing and transmitting data. The second regards aspects of how we control and interfere with these devices, from already “old” touch interfaces, to voice or gesture control, which enables us to work and communicate in a more efficient way.
Who are your 3 inspirational companies / individuals in tech or STEM space?
Basically, any company that tries to push digitization either via intelligent, integrated platform solutions or sensor technology creating new need-based markets. There are so many interesting SMEs and companies out there that are not afraid of some remaining uncertainties e.g. on data protection and/ or certifications. Surely, they need to do their homework but still highly believe in the good of their solution. We see this motivation and engagement every year during our Innovation World Cup Series where about 1000 techpreneurs annually submit their technologies. Surely, some will survive, and some will disappear as this market is still developing and forming itself. So be curious about what’s to come and if you want to get a glimpse of tomorrows’ innovators in 2019, you should not miss our Start-Up Spotlight Session at the WT | Wearable Technologies Conference in San Francisco on July 10.
The most innovative wearables event will be back in beautiful San Francisco on July 9-10, co-located with SEMICON West, the premier event in the electronics industry. The WT | Wearable Technologies Conference 2019 USA is already the 34th edition of the global conference series showcasing the bandwidth of this huge market and most exhilarating products and projects from the entire wearable technologies value chain. Topics include AI and big data in the wearable market, the future of digital health, analytics in professional sports (featuring NFLPA), the latest industrial applications and much more. Take the chance to drive your business development and get the latest insights in applications and digitalization strategies via IoT and wearable solutions.
Women of Wearables are media and community partner of this years event, use code WTUS19_WoW for 25% off tickets! Website link: https://www.wearable-technologies-us.com/ Registration link: http://bit.ly/WTUS19Register Apply for reduced prices on demo packages and tickets for startups: http://bit.ly/startupsWTUS19
Interested in Wearables and IoT? Then you should not miss the 35th WT | Wearable Technologies Conference 2019 ASIA! On September 11 the B2B conference will be making a stop in Bangkok, Thailand for the first time. The event will be held concurrently with Medical Fair Thailand, which is the most established platform for the regional medical and health care community. Learn how wearables digitize the healthcare industry, find out more about the new era of fitness wearables and the latest enabling technologies in our extravagant line-up and benefit from substantial networking opportunities. Join the world’s biggest Wearable Technologies Conference Series – purely focused on wearables!
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This interview was conducted by Marija Butkovic, Digital Marketing and PR strategist, founder and CEO of Women of Wearables. She regularly writes and speaks on topics of wearable tech, fashion tech, IoT, entrepreneurship and diversity. Visit marijabutkovic.co.uk or follow Marija on Twitter @MarijaButkovic @Women_Wearables.