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XOEye Technologies just nailed down $1.5 million in funding for the development of its smartglasses for blue-collar workers.
“We believe that enterprise wearables will become a transformative necessity over the coming years and a mandate for efficiency, workplace safety, and compliance across many sectors,” says XOEye’s chief executive Aaron Salow.
XOEye’s smartglasses look like the protective eye gear that those working with heavy machinery or in any kind of power facility would wear. Embedded in that headset, though, is an 8MP camera that records and streams HD video back to a manager. The smartglasses connect to Wi-Fi and come with an earpiece for audio functionality.
Salow’s vision is to enhance managerial oversight, allowing supervisors to see where a project went wrong and to give instructions on how to fix an issue as it’s happening. Salow also makes a case for the glasses as a way to remotely train and support employees. It’s easy to see a strong case for this kind of smart eyewear. Imagine a worker performing a complicated electrical procedure. A manager could oversee the whole process remotely, helping to ensure the safety of the worker.
But video cameras on workers also seem like an incredible micromanaging tool, and it’s also easy to see how it could be used as a tool to assess blame and punishment when things go awry in the work place. There’s also room for criticism from a privacy perspective.
The money is part of a $2 million series A round the company is currently raising. XOEye says the funding will help the company transition from its focus on research and development to a full supplier of wearable technology for enterprise. The round will be open for 90 days. So far, Crestlight Ventures has contributed most to the raise.
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