Concept: London-based OpenSensors has offered sensor-based data-powered solutions to enterprises to assist them to optimize desk space and meeting rooms or figure out the footfall in a given area amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The startup enables the social distancing and monitors air quality as indoor air quality, including humidity, is considered to be a key factor in the spread of the virus.

Nature of Disruption: OpenSensors’ workplace solution supports organizations to deliver a safe, agile and cost-effective work environment. It focuses on the software part of the solution that collects sensor data, fetches patterns and insights. Any number of technologies can be applied on the hardware to engage with the environment, including Passive Infrared Sensors (PIR), which can be put in individual desks to monitor heat and motion, and substantiate if somebody is at their desk and for how long. Other sensor types can leverage object recognition to count the population in a particular place. It provides a dashboard that shows heat maps on various locations in the facility, wherein users can filter it based on CO2, humidity, temperature and noise.

Outlook: In the event of the COVID-19, government bodies are still skeptical about whether workers should return to the office. Due to changing safety policies, enterprises had to send newly returned employees home. Therefore, to overcome safety challenges while adhering to government norms, organizations need an end-to-end solution for workplace space utilization and measuring air quality. OpenSensors can help enterprises to overcome uncertainties posed by increasing cases, and the time taken to roll out the vaccine. The startup serves over 30 clients from the financial, insurance and technology domain, taking their assistance with solving complex real estate operations globally. It aims to partner with more companies post-COVID-19 as many enterprises would likely be interested in perusing over their operational costs and verify if money is being wasted over under-utilized spaces. Moreover, OpenSensor has raised $4M in a recent series funding round and intends to use it to aid businesses to clear a path back to the office by measuring air quality and space occupancy.

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