Just when we’ve started to understand the implications of wearable technology, Seattle-based Reflx Labs comes along to give us a sneak peek into the possibilities of what the next generation of wearable technology will bring. With the second generation of wearables, we will see products, like Reflx Lab’s Boogio, that can not only log activity, but analyze movement and provide a real-time interface with a variety of third-party apps.

Boogio is a foot-based, multi-sensor pair of technology devices and an open wearable platform. The platform is capable of measuring acceleration in any direction, pressure along the toe, arch, and heel of the feet, gravitational centre, and core balance to better understand the effects of these forces on physical movement. 

As illustrated by Reflx’s product, the goal of these new products will be to help users access biometric data to track muscle movements and provide super personalized feedback.

REFLX Labs CEO Joe Torres
REFLX Labs CEO Joe Torres.

We recently interviewed the CEO of REFLX Labs, Joe Torres. We asked him about the future of wearable technology and his groundbreaking Boogio product.

Why was Boogio the first product to be produced by REFLX? 

Joe Torres – We invented a product that redefines the current expectations of wearable technology. Boogio is the first wearable technology that can sense gravitational force, inner balance, and 3D foot acceleration of a person in real time. This data is the foundation of understanding discreet movement and building an immersive digitally connected ecosystem in areas of entertainment, health, training, and even the internet of things. We are offering Boogio as a development kit so people can experiment and participate in this exciting movement.

It seems health related products are the first type of wearables to be produced. Why do you think that is?

JT – Whenever a new technology appears the first thing most people ask is “what’s in it for me?” The assumption is that everyone wants to better understand themselves and physical activity is one measure of health that can be identified with commodity off-the-shelf sensors like gyros and accelerometer. This is also true for physiological data like heart rate and body temp with IR sensors and other standard tools that have been around for a while. It was a logical first approach but things are quickly moving into a new generation of wearables like Boogio that are multi-functional and offer so much more value to people beyond fitness tracking.

Outside of the health application of Boogio, where else do you see Boogio making an impact?

JT – Gamifying activity, creating more immersive digital experiences, pairing with virtually reality simulations, athletic training,connecting people with the internet of things so they can control devices remotely with body gestures.

Interesting. Since it was first introduced at SIC 2013 what changes have we seen been made to the Boogio? 

JT – The current version of Boogio leverages Bluetooth Smart. We have added more sensors and developed mobile demo applications and have paired it with Oculus Rift and Google Glass to better understand applications in VR and augmented realities.

What can we expect next for Boogio? 

JT – Boogio is currently in alpha development. We plan to significantly reduce the size and cost for our beta development program.

What problems is REFLX looking to solve next? What can the public expect?

JT – We are creating a platform that anyone can use to explore and build with in ways we cannot possibly imagine. By supporting, creativity, fun, entrepreneurship, and health, our goal is to leverage wearable computing to explore new frontiers for people and technology.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
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Karim Kanji
Karim Kanji is the Canadian Director of Social Media Strategy at iNvolved Media. iNvolved Media was purchased by Active International in 2015. Clients include popular food brands, technology brands and other CPG companies. Prior to joining iNvolved Media, Karim led the paid social media strategy for some of Canada's most popular CPG and confectionery brands for Catalyst/GroupM. Karim started in the social media space when he co-founded and was the President of THIRDOCEAN where he led the creation of digital content for companies including Scotiabank, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Microsoft, Wild Water Kingdom, Palomino Systems Inc. and Techvibes. Karim has also been recognized as a pioneer in podcasting having interviewed people such as such as federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, former MLSE boss Richard Peddie, TVO's Steve Paikin, Canadian serial angel investor Dr. Boris Wertz, HootSuite founder Ryan Holmes, Mathew Ingram, Mitch Joel from Mirium and many, many others. As a demonstration of thought leadership, Karim led the development and execution of reports discussing how technology and digital media have impacted industries such as retail, education, health, gaming, sports and banking.