The past year has been an interesting one for all businesses. For the team here at Cardo Crew, we ended 2019 on a high thanks to Frost & Sullivan recognizing our business as the Technology Innovation leader for group communication technology in noisy environments. Frost & Sullivan carried out extensive primary and secondary research across the entire value chain before choosing the winner. For Cardo Crew, this is a great accolade, as Frost & Sullivan’s global teams of analysts and consultants research a wide range of markets in multiple industries and regions to identify companies that consistently pursue or invest in new technologies. The award is great recognition of our hard work and was a fantastic end to 2019.
Then we move to 2020, which for most businesses, regardless of industry, will go down as one of the most difficult years on record. From office blocks to factory floors, every organisation had to find new ways of working, ensuring employee safety without compromising on productivity. For administrative based workers, this meant taking meetings online and shifting to remote working where possible, but for millions of ‘boots-on-the-ground’ teams, working from home simply wasn’t an option. Despite workers stepping up their use of PPE (personal protective equipment) to shield them from the virus and prevent them from spreading it, the need for social distancing brought with it some inevitable challenges around communication.
Bringing our PRO-1 to PPE Manufacturers World-wide
Communication has always been critical for what 2020 dubbed ‘essential workers’. Where hands-free wearable communication was once employed as a matter of convenience and productivity, it was now necessary as a matter of safety. Instead of contaminating surfaces like shared phones, radios, headsets and intercoms, users needed to be able to communicate in a frictionless, hands-free way, without interfering with masks, visors, helmets or any other PPE they were wearing. This fuelled the increasing popularity of so-called ‘Smart PPE’, an area in which Cardo Crew excelled thanks to the global launch of the PRO-1 in January 2020.
The Cardo Crew PRO-1 is a lightweight mesh communication module that can be integrated into a company’s existing PPE, transforming something as simple as a helmet into a smart communication device. The PRO-1 was designed specifically for team communication in busy, noisy or hazardous environments, making it perfect for emergency services, construction, healthcare and even hospitality. 2020 also saw the launch of the PROmesh mobile app, allowing easy management and rapid set-up of PRO-1 devices with real-time control and our new website cardocrew.com.
What truly sets the PRO-1 apart as a wearable hands-free communication device is its reliance on Cardo Crew’s Dynamic Mesh Communication (DMC) technology. This allows two-way hands-free communication for groups of up to 15 workers using a fully autonomous network. Not only does this offer greater range, flexibility and reliability over something like Bluetooth, it also completely removes the need for ‘base stations’ which can restrict movement. Instead, each PRO-1 device acts a sort of ‘mini-hub’, meaning that wherever the teams go, their communication capabilities move with them.
New Partnerships in Europe and the Middle East
The implications for transforming potentially dangerous environments into streamlined, COVID-secure hubs of productivity are almost limitless. So great is the potential, that Cardo Crew managed to secure new OEM partnerships in Europe and the Middle East across both civil and military PPE markets following the launch of the PRO-1. While the pandemic will hopefully soon be behind us, the benefits of moving to effective hands-free wearable communication technology are likely to live on in sectors that might otherwise never have considered it.