Internet of Things (IoT) and smart wearable company KaHa announced plans to open a multi party innovation and research lab in Singapore, modelled after the network philosophy of IoT and created in response to market demands for faster development and commercialization. Public and private partners across the IoT development value chain including A*STAR SIMTech, Bridgestone, Curtis Australia, MHA Manufacture de Haute Accessory Partners, Tex Line and Titan, will come together under-one-roof to streamline development resulting in faster prototyping, testing, and go-to-market.
Designed for efficient multi-party collaboration, the various development stations will be on site and in close proximity – from business to project management, hardware to software, prototyping to testing, and from remodification up to delivery. Development time and costs will be greatly reduced, for instance speeding up schedules of weeks into just days. Whereas in conventional processing, work is done piecemeal and transported partially and gradually at intervals, and delays occur frequently and are exacerbated by minor changes.
The lab’s core infrastructure is the KaHa platform and its AI capabilities. KaHa has over the past 3 years developed an architecture which is unparalleled and optimised for consumer-centric experiences like health and wellness, fitness and sports, digital payment and safety. The company has big data architecture and tools for artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and recently its proof-of-concept on natural language processing (NLP). The company has also created a Network Operations Lab(NOC) that facilitates the proof-of-concept process through real-time testing of available/simulated data with live demonstrations all within the same space. Regular reviews at the NOC will ensure data integrity and projects timeliness.
The lab is located at the vibrant one-north technology hub of Singapore and the launch is targeted for initial projects in healthcare and wellness, smart apparels, sensor hub and power consumption. The lab will also work with KaHa’s brand partners and co-plan their roadmap and play the role of bringing all stakeholders towards achieving these use case on smart wearables, as well as the building of a comprehensive healthcare IoT ecosystem capable of integrating medtech and public-private health care and related service providers. The pioneering partners are:
- KaHa: Singapore-based and the region’s only end-to-end IoT and smart wearable platform company with patents in IoT platform architecture. KaHa possesses deep industry links, including being the strategic partner for A*STARSIMTech and EAC flagship industry programmes.
- A*STAR SIMTech: Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology develops high value manufacturing technology and human capital to contribute to the competitiveness of Singapore industry.
- Bridgestone: A Hong Kong-based watch manufacturer with International reach including its own production base in China. The company specializes in creative design, production and sales of lifestyle and fashion watches.
- Curtis Australia:With a heritage from the 1890’s, an international jewellery, watch and pen atelier known for its distinctive, handmade and desirable luxury products crafted in solid carat golds and precious gems.
- MHA Manufacture de Haute Accessories Partners: A division of Niklaus LNI SA, established over 110 years ago on the foundation of swiss watch manufacturing, MHA is the premier Swiss designer and manufacturer of private label luxury accessories.
- Tex Line: A one-stop apparel and sportswear sourcing supply chain and service provider, with reliable capability in overseeing sourcing to production and delivery.
- Titan Company Limited: The fifth largest integrated own brand watch manufacturer in the world. Over the last three decades, Titan has expanded and explored into under-penetrated markets and created leading brands across categories.
IoT and the smart wearables industry will touch the lives of over a billion people in the next 5 years with a market value of close to USD120B. With KaHa’sproprietary platform coupled with the presence and expertise of local and international partners, the lab will be a driver of growth for the Singapore IoT and wearable ecosystem having a global impact. KaHa plans to hire and train locals talents and create a strong local capability and know-how and help strengthen the Singapore core and competitive edge for Industry 4.0.
Managed by a head of lab with end-to-end IoT experience, the lab will provide opportunities for jobs and upskilling The lab will also host hackathons and release software development kits (SDK), with the latest tools in areas including AI, Machine Learning, NLP, Big Data and health-oriented algorithms, digital payment, enabling participants to problem-solve real use cases and understand how their work contributes towards building the ecosystem.
CEO and founder of KaHa, Pawan Gandhi comments, “As a home-grown company committed to the development of the local IoT and wearable ecosystem, it’s important that we have core development capabilities here in Singapore that can capitalize on opportunities and respond to market demands quickly.We are also actively engaging ETPL, the commercialization arm of A*STAR to harness local industry expertise to boost the nation innovation engine. We have taken the philosophy of IoT and connectivity to heart, ensuring we have oversight and responsibility each step of the way, while becoming even more nimble and flexible to cater to manufacturers’ needs faster.”
Dr Lim Ser Yong, Executive Director of SIMTech added, “SIMTech has had a long history of collaborating with the industry. We have partnered KaHa in our emerging applications programmes over the past years, and I am happy to see that it has yielded innovative breakthroughs in IoT and smart wearable technology that will significantly contribute to the local ecosystem. We are pleased to take our partnership to the next level and work together with COVE R2C IoT Innovation Lab to speed up the development and commercialization of emerging technologies to drive Singapore’s advanced manufacturing industry.”
Vice President of Bridgestone Watch LTD, Ray Lin added “Providing the best quality products and services to our customers has always been our formula of success. Therefore it is an honour to be able to join hands with so many industry leaders and together, and continue to innovate and create some of the best watches in the world. We look forward to contributing our expertise and also bring these innovations to our customers and the market.
CEO of Curtis Australia, Glenn Curtis comments “The high-end luxury timepiece and jewelry market is seeing an evolution as even the most discerning ultra-high net worth clientele develops an interest in smart wearable technology functions simply because they have become ubiquitous and improve living habits. As a partner in the research centre, Curtis will contribute design knowledge through years of handcrafting the finest timepieces and writing instruments and gain a first-hand understanding of the most efficient ways of incorporating smart technology.”
CEO of MHA, Andy Ras-Wokadded “With decades of private-label specialist manufacturing experience in luxury accessories from jewellery to writing instruments, we are keenly aware of the exciting opportunity IoT and smart wearables present to the international luxury market. This is a great opportunity to enhance our value network internationally and work with specialist partners. We are especially excited to represent the Swiss brand of manufacturing in this collaboration, and are already thinking of further bringing on fellow Swiss partners to the lab.”
CMO of Titan, Suparna Mitra comments“As the global wave of wearable and digital innovation continues to rise, Titan too is proactively creating new lifestyle products and experiences for everyone, especially today’s millennial consumers. The success of many of our smartwatches powered by KaHa IoT technology confirms our investment into smart wearables. Participation in the lab will further our partnership with KaHa as our technology collaborator and strengthen Titan as the leader in watches and accessories.”
Product Manager of Tex Line, Justin Tan added “Through our years of building up expertise and relationships in the apparel and sporting goods industry, we pride ourselves on our constant ability to offer our customers cost-competitiveness and quality. As the highly-competitive sports apparel market moves into smart wearables, we must stay ahead of the curve by re-thinking how we can accelerate product development and cut go-to-market time. COVE R2C IoT Innovation Lab will provide our industry with an important advantage.”