Sometimes the simplest questions don’t have a simple answer, but David Troup is all about finding a way to do it anyway.
That’s why he launched the Green Bay-based Xensr (pronounced “sensor”), a company that’s helping extreme sports athletes and enthusiasts figure out how high and far they’re jumping when they do the mind-bending stunts that make couch surfers do a double-take.
Xensr, an Insight Innovation award nominee this year, is moving at a breakneck speed. Its initial product offering won Best of Show at the Winter Outdoor Retailer Show, and was featured as one of the “Top 4 Fitness Trackers to Watch” in Wired magazine. Olympic athletes are already using it.
“If you look closely at some of the training after the first of the year, you’ll start to notice the products on those athletes’ equipment,” says Troup, Xensr’s CEO.
The public can try out the new XensrAIR this month when the company launches the 3D sports motion tracker designed primarily for skiing, snowboarding, windsurfing, kiteboarding and wakeboarding. It connects to an athlete’s equipment and can track stats like height and distance to an accuracy of about an inch, Troup says.
It also helps extreme athletes edit GoPro or iPhone video by automatically sequencing the jumps, with or without a display showing the metrics.
“Why was this performance more epic than the other one? Well, we quantify epic,” Troup says.
Offering clear metrics opens the sport to a larger audience, and it can impact the way it operates and how athletes are paid, he says.
XensrAIR eliminates the confusion that comes from subjective decisions by sports judges and provides the kind of objective metrics the industry has been missing, says co-founder Casey Hauser, who tests the product out of the company’s office in Maui.
“There is a need for this – you hear it all the time,” Hauser says. “It’s there every time you watch a contest or read it in an article, and (athletes) talk about this ‘rush.’ Now there’s a way to quantify it.”
The XensrAIR is the second iteration of the company’s first to-market product, XensrCase, a similar device that connected to the iPhone. But Apple had already redesigned the connector at the bottom of the phone by the time the product launched.
“We’d already moved onto the next product because essentially Apple had killed on arrival that product for us,” Troup says. Everyone who bought the first-generation Xensr products will receive one of the new XensrAIRs without charge when they’re introduced this month.
The company is planning to launch another Xensr product in January, essentially a heartier version of the devise. The company also is working on applying Xensr technology to medical, military and other uses.
“The core technology we built has a lot of uses,” Troup says. “So we’re helping our partners integrate our technology into these other systems.”
ON THE WEB
See Xensr products in action at www.youtube.com/user/xensr