Hillel’s Tech Corner: Edgybees’ lifesaving drones

 If you want to get an idea of how far we have come from a technological perspective, a good place to look is drone technology. As a drone enthusiast, it never ceases to amaze me that a device that fits in your hand is able to fly miles away at the speed of a car, all while recording 4K video. And I haven’t even gotten to the professional and enterprise drones, let alone the autonomous drones.

EDGYBEES UTILIZES its gaming roots with tailored solutions for automotive reality gaming experiences. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Well, that is the good news. Drones are amazing. 

The bad news? There is not much one can do with a drone. Yes, you can take stunning photography, you can fly over locations to which you would otherwise not have access, but that’s about it. It gets boring fast. 

Many companies are trying to solve this problem and working on products that will give consumer drone operators more things to do. 

There is only one company that I am aware of that is using drones to save lives: Edgybees. With a very interesting name and an equally interesting story to match, Edgybees is the leader in real-time collaborative visual-intelligence technology, providing critical software that enables for the most accurate, collaborative virtual worlds of any complex environment. 

What that means is that this company has developed software to accompany the drone operator and provide them with visual assistance in complex environments. Think fire departments that need a better visual of the source and current state of a fire. Think law enforcement officers who need a better visual on a crime scene or the location of a suspect. 

Edgybees’ First Response C2 system for professional drone users in emergency response organizations is currently operational in more than 70 organizations in the US, Australia, Europe and Israel. 

Edgybees was founded in January 2017, has offices in Israel and San Diego, and has raised $6.4 million of venture funding to date. 

The company is currently operational in a myriad of sectors, including public safety and industrial. For example, the company’s First Response Command and Control system was deployed by the Alameda County Fire Department to assist in search and rescue missions during last year’s historic California wildfires, and hurricanes Florence and Michael. 

Edgybees is also operational with the Joshua Texas Fire Department. 

If drone technology wasn’t cool enough, Edgybees also makes augmented reality (AR) to accompany the drone mid-flight. 

The company’s advanced AR software platform, when paired with drone technology, offers first responders unprecedented situational awareness, overlaying key geospatial and geographical information onto live video feeds. So the drone pilot might be able to see a real-time map of the location as they fly over it, to name one example. 

EDGYBEES UTILIZES its gaming roots with tailored solutions for automotive reality gaming experiences. (photo credit: Courtesy)

AS FAR as the industrial applications of Edgybees’ technology, the company ensures safe procedures in any industrial scene by providing enhanced understanding and communication. Whether it’s working with oil rigs or construction sites, Edgybees enhances the understanding of any environment from all angles, revealing otherwise unknown crucial information – such as the location of people and names of structures, or where electrical, gas, and Internet lines are located

Edgybees gets an average of five requests per week from firefighting and police departments, wildlife safekeeping organizations, oil and gas companies, and agriculture ventures wanting to use the technology. This demand originates mostly in the US but also Europe, Australia, and even a recent request from Iceland!

One of the most fascinating applications of Edgybees’ system is helping to safe-keep endangered animals. 

The company was founded by CEO Adam Kaplan, CTO Menashe Haskin, and director of platform Nitay Megides. All three founders bring decades of experience, but one thing worth mentioning is that Menashe prior to joining Edgybees, managed the Israeli development office of Amazon Prime Air. That is the program by which Amazon will deliver packages to our doorstop by drone. 

Today, Edgybees has tens of employees, is growing fast, and has raised capital from leading investors including Verizon, Motorola Solutions, NFX, OurCrowd and 8VC, among others. 

Finally, in case this story wasn’t interesting enough, there is one more thing that makes this company unique. All this started with a game. The company’s first product was a mobile game that provided a real-time layer of augmented information into virtual video environments. 

The life-saving benefits to military and first-responders soon became clear. This simple game-like interface overlaid on to dynamic and complex real-world scenarios proved to eliminate operational ambiguity with visual augmented intelligence and visually-enhanced real-time communication.

Edgybees continues to enjoy its gaming roots with tailored solutions for military training and automotive functions with augmented reality gaming experiences for passengers that complement the driver’s parallel safe-driving solutions. That original game is still available and enjoyed by players worldwide.

I’ve known Edgybees for a few years both from the founders and the investors. This is a company using some of the most cutting-edge technology including drones and AR to actually save lives. It is no wonder there is such high demand for their solutions among first responders, law enforcement agencies and even governments. 

For me, Edgybees is a highly impressive company that managed to crack the nut of leveraging drone technology to its full potential. With its technology combined with the capabilities of modern day high-end drones, the sky is the limit. 

And in case you were wondering, that pun was very much intended.