2016 Tech Impact Awards: Emerging Technology/Productivity

Winner: Impinj; Silver Award: Kymeta Corporation
| FROM THE PRINT EDITION |
 
 

WINNER: 
Impinj
Location: Seattle | Employees: 208
The electronic tags that Impinj creates do more than permit wireless tracking of items that are sold or served, according to the company’s cofounder and new CEO, Chris Diorio. The RAIN RFID devices attached to food, pharmaceuticals, clothing or packages are “giving digital life to everything in your everyday world, extending the reach of the internet by a factor of 100.” Diorio says RAIN (for RAdio frequency IdentificatioN) tags connected more than five billion items last year, granting businesses new visibility into what they manufacture, transport or sell — and helping them reduce waste. Delta Air Lines is rolling out wireless tags for tracking luggage. Of the 80 billion apparel items retailed each year, RAIN is used for less than 5 percent, suggesting huge opportunity for growth. Impinj, founded in part on Diorio’s research at the University of Washington, boasts sole position as a company that offers a full platform, including the tags, sensors for connectivity and a software system that feeds the data to partner applications. That strength boosted a strong IPO in July and a current market cap of more than $350 million. Ultimately, Diorio says, “We would like to be the Qualcomm and Android of RAIN.”

 

SILVER AWARD:
Kymeta Corporation
Location: Redmond | Employees: 110
Like a sharpshooter, Redmond-based Kymeta has its sights set on anything that moves. Its lightweight, flat-panel antenna uses highly engineered metals to provide fast satellite connections to the internet for cars, ships, trains and planes as they’re moving. Slated for a 2017 release, Kymeta’s mTenna technology promises an alternative universe where cellular signals can’t keep up, at a price range and scale fit for consumer products. With $124 million in funding from major players like Bill Gates and Toyota, this nimble startup appears aimed for success.

 

Related Content

Sponsored

Teamwork and strong leadership land Bizible on the list of WA's 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2017.

Sponsored

“This office is the Space Needle amongst the rest of the Consulting companies in Seattle” summarized one employee who helped AIM make the list of WA's 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2017.

Xuchen Yao and Guoguo Chen were interns at Google working on language-processing technology when Amazon introduced Echo, the media-streaming device equipped with a voice-activated intelligent assistant, which is triggered when the user says the hotword “Alexa.”  

When it comes to taking on global warming, few ideas are as audacious as the one put forward by Mark Anderson, the Friday Harbor-based CEO of Strategic News Service who has a knack for identifying technology trends.