Japanese company KeyValue has created the Smart Cushion to help consumers or offices keep track of their inactivity, or businesses to detect the crowdedness of their premises.
Sensor-based technology is most often associated with tracking physical activity, but it can also help monitor the opposite. Japanese company KeyValue has created the Smart Cushion to help consumers or offices keep track of their inactivity, or businesses to detect the crowdedness of their premises.
The product takes the form of a standard cushion that can be placed onto any chair or stool. Inside, the seat includes an pressure-sensitive Apple iBeacon sensor that detects when it’s being sat on. The simple device connects to mobile devices and enables users to keep track of whether a seat is currently in use or not, as well as how often or how long it’s being used for. For personal use, the cushion can let owners know if they need to take a break from sitting in the same spot, while office managers can use the same function to ensure their employees remain healthy. However, businesses with cafeterias or waiting rooms, for example, can monitor which seats are in use in real time, helping them to better manage crowdedness. At the same time, visitors could use the same functionality to find available seating.
The Smart Cushion is set to retail at between JPY 1,200 and JPY 2,000. We’ve already seen the Netherlands’ NS Reisplanner Xtra deliver data on the crowdedness of trains for both travelers and rail operators. Could we soon see furniture come with these kind of smart sensors as standard?