ESA BIC Bavaria startup Kinfinity is developing a new generation of wearable technology for use in virtual reality, robotics, gaming and much more. Its first products, the Kinfinity Glove and the Kinfinity Suit, allow easy control of complex robotic systems with a new level of accuracy. The spin-off of the German Aerospace Center is combining patented sensor technology with smart and intuitive software to enable the user to perform highly precise movements as well as plan and control complete production flows without the need to learn new control methods.
The sensors in the Kinfinity Glove can verify whether parts have been put together in the right order and with the accurate pressure and can thus even be used as a quality control device e.g. in the automotive industry. In combination with augmented reality glasses, the glove can also be used to train new production workers. Further applications include robot control for high-end industrial or medical use as well as virtual reality games at home.
Maximilian Maier and Maxime Chalon both founded Kinfinity and started their two-year incubation programme at ESA BIC Bavaria’s Oberpfaffenhofen location in June 2018.
ESA BIC Bavaria Manager Cornelia Gebath (CG) interviews Maximilian Maier (MM), CEO at Kinfinity.
CG: Please give us a sneak peek of your product and the team behind it.
MM: We developed novel sensors that can precisely measure positions and orientations while being easy to manufacture. By implementing those into wearables, we offer a low-cost and easy way to track human motion. Our core team comes from the Robotics and Mechatronics Center at the German Aerospace Center, where our technology was originally developed. With this, we aim to make communication with technology as easy as talking to a human.
CG: What has been your company’s biggest challenge so far?
MM: Motion capture is a very recent topic that can be useful in many fields. However, each field has different requirements. It is hard to find the right niche market out of all the possible ones so that we can design our products to cater to all necessary needs.
CG: Can you explain the three main ingredients of your recipe for success?
MM: Raising a start-up is not an easy task; you need endurance and perseverance. We work hard to achieve our goals and our motto is “try, fail, and improve”. We are passionate about our vision and are committed to converting our products into technology that is relevant for today’s market.
CG: What do you expect from ESA BIC Bavaria and how do you think the initiative and its network will help you to kick-start your business case?
MM: We hope that participation in ESA BIC Bavaria will give us the opportunity to meet new contacts in its large business network. We would like to gain new partners and possibly collaborate on different projects for which our novel technology will be of use. We would like to communicate our idea to a broader public at conferences and networking events and thus find more application and funding opportunities for our products.
CG: What do you think to benefit from the DLR support?
MM: The DLR support can offer us technical competences that could help us to further develop our product. Some of the DLR’s projects could possibly even benefit from our technology, which would lead to interesting cooperation opportunities.
CG: Let’s reach for the stars – what is going to happen in Kinfinity’s future?
MM: Kinfinity will be an affordable and simple system that can reliably and precisely capture motions. It will thus be leading technology in various fields of industry and research, e.g. to (re-)programme robots or analyse the movements of athletes during training.