Chris Rodley - CEO and Founder of Snap Information Technologies was this month recognised as an Up & Comer in the top 50 people in the Nelson / Marlborough region by Wild Tomato Magazine.
Last month Chris was also nominated for New Zealander of the year 2014 in the innovation category by Labour MP for Nelson Maryan Street with references from the CEO of the Nelson Economic Development agency and Nelson Mayor.
"This recognises the hard work and sacrifice of the fantastic team at Snap Information Technologies" said Chris. "It is an exciting season for SnapIT with a number of large corporate contracts negotiated and cameras being installed on many projects that would have been beyond our wildest dreams when we started this company. Watch this space!"
The SnapitHD Camera is able to record and display ultra high quality 5 Mega-pixel 360° images with absolutely no blind spots or moving parts. SnapitHD online software allows users to be fully immersed in the content. A user can look left or right, up or down as if they are standing at the scene. With no moving parts on the camera multiple users are able to view the content at the same time all looking different directions.
Combined with wearable virtual reality technology the camera is completely immersive allowing users to look around as if they are actually where the camera is located.
The camera has a number of applications - a video at the top of www.snapithd.com taken from TV3 Tech Spot outlines some of these opportunities.
SnapitHD Cameras are used for Tourism promotion where they are getting 2 million online impressions in a big week. Integration with Metservice.com, Jasons Travel, Trademe Travel, AA Maps, Google Maps / Earth and many regional tourism sites as well as many other sites online. Images and video are also supplied to TV3 for the 3News Weather report.
The customers branding message is displayed on the image and this has been a very successful marketing tool for the businesses using the camera.
A recent project with Burger King is outlined in this blog post by a NZ based social media expert:
Cameras are also used for project management and are used by Fletchers Construction, Mainzeal, ASB, Telecom, Various Councils, David Reid Homes, BMW, Various Universities and many many more architects and construction companies. These cameras are used as timelapse and record of the build as well as health and safety and ensuring project deadlines are met as well as allowing project managers to monitor remote sites reducing site visits.
Also, the SnapIT security package allows users to view content on their smart phone, tablet or PC from anywhere in the world. SnapIT target corporate security, bank, airport and marine applications where traditional cameras can not be installed due to remote or harsh environments or the need to monitor sites from a single location around New Zealand.
The camera requires power and an internet connection to run and has built in cellular and WIFI connectivity. With power usage at less than 2 watts, a very small solar panel can be included to make the camera truly wireless.
Chris launched the prototype SnapitHD 360 Cam at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (CES).
The product was very well received by the tech community and Chris fielded enquiries from Nasa, Linkin Park and many other large international companies.
The SnapitHD camera is unique in the world and has been designed and is partially built and assembled in Nelson. Parts of the board that cannot be manufactured in NZ are manufactured in Taiwan.
Chris and Andrew both left their jobs taking significant risk to start the company after installing an American made camera in Hanmer Springs in 2004 and seeing the popularity of this camera online.
The reason they installed the camera was so that their father David could watch his holiday home during winter to monitor snow fall. The camera was made public and became popular with lines men, council, tourists and community groups for many different applications from checking weather to promoting the pools for tourists.
There were problems with this US camera product which Chris and Andrew thought they could have a crack at fixing. That was 10 years ago and they have now released their own product developed initially in the back spare bedroom and the garage.
Significant challenges have been overcome as everything has needed to be created and written from scratch, including things you take for granted like white balance and focus settings, circuit design and power management. A very large amount of learning and developing and shaping of this product has occurred over the past 10 years.
The global video surveillance market has experienced significant growth over the past few years on the back of rising concerns for security and safety across the globe. This has resulted in increased demand for technically advanced surveillance systems such as 360° ultra wide angle cameras creating huge growth opportunities. The market for CCTV (Closed Circuit Television) is projected to reach US$19 Billion by the end of 2013.
Analogue CCTV currently dominates the global surveillance market, however the scenario will begin to change in 2013. In the future, network IP technology will emerge as the leading surveillance technology.
Demand for project management solutions for construction is increasing, as the world comes out of financial upheaval we will see the return of large construction projects. Auckland City Council saved upwards of NZ$50,000 in travel and project management costs on a large remote bridge construction project by utilising a remote camera system. In 2008 the council used SnapIT cameras in their construction, roading and street management projects. SnapIT are working with 6 other councils in similar ways in NZ, and see real growth potential in other world markets for this service. The goal is to be included in building contracts and we are now included in some of Nelson City Council construction and building contracts, this is achieved by targeting architects who see value in maintaining constant visual contact with what is happening on site.
The area of construction monitoring is a niche that is relatively free from competition.
As a stand alone monitoring product the SnapitHD line of cameras are set to change the way that we see the world. The growth of the IP (Internet Protocol) camera market is 300% since 2007. This is a high growth industry and the ability of the SnapitHD 360 Cam to replace what would be up to 6 regular IP cameras provides a strong competitive advantage for the future.
Chris is looking to open up new niches in areas such as marine applications, security and monitoring as well as traditional markets such as banking and airport security where a unique approach can open up opportunities for entry.
All R&D undertaken to date has been completely funded by cash flow. Chris plans to continue this approach by building up working capital through business growth and borrowing if necessary.
Chris believes in the “Lean Startup” philosophy and feel his ability to find funds and resources in unusual, creative and innovative ways is reflected in success to date.
Eight ships and more than 800 sailors have taken part in the first ever Trans Tasman Tall Ships race from Sydney to Opua, and will be in Auckland from Friday 25th - Monday 28th October 2013.
See www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/newseventsculture/events/Events/Pages/aucklandtallshipsfestival.aspx for full details.
This situation has produced some amazing photos of cloud formations over the last few days and will be great for viewing airport activity. Awesome to partner with Rotorua International Airport.
Emirates Team New Zealand will be welcomed home to Shed 10 this Friday at 12 noon. There will be screens in The Cloud and on Queens Wharf. For those wishing to watch the action from the comfort of their homes or workplaces, TVNZ will be live streaming the Shed 10 formalities on www.onenews.co.nz. Ngati Whatua will welcome Emirates Team NZ into Shed 10 with a brief powhiri at 12 noon. This will be followed by a series of short speeches and will feature Dean Barker and Grant Dalton. Kiwi icon Dave Dobbyn will also be on hand to Welcome Home the team.
Emirates Team New Zealand will then depart Shed 10 by boat and be taken past Queens Wharf, Princes Wharf, Halsey Wharf and into the Viaduct. There are many vantage points to cheer them on during the ‘sail by’. (source: voxy.co.nz)
Good news. After 3 yrs of uncertainty, new operators have big plans. Situated at Tahunanui Beach Natureland has been a favourite place to visit for many. That's it there, the circle of greenery beside the Modellers pond.
Godwit alert! We have had our first sighting of the Godwits arriving at Farewell Spit for the season. These birds travel from Alaska flying non stop for 8 days. They reside on Farewell Spit from September-March dining on our tasty marine cuisine.