By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA
Brandon Hardin calls the device he has created the “command glove,” and he has secured “Command Your WorldTM” as the trademark for the product.
You are no doubt wondering what it must be. For starters, it is, in fact, a glove designed by Hardin to address a personal need, but one that he believes will resonate with many other runners like himself.
“I run a lot,” Hardin says. “When I run, I listen to music.”
Like many runners, his music is organized according to his running routine.
“My girlfriend got to my playlist and changed things,” Hardin told us. The result was an altered playlist that did not jive with his workout plans. More important was the fact that he discovered the changes while running. As joggers know, adjusting music on an iPhone/iPod or other music device while running is not that easy. It distracts them from their primary focus. Also, not hearing traffic or people at intersections and at key times could pose a safety risk.
“I looked for something in the market that would allow me to adjust things simply,” Hardin explained. “I did not find anything, so I came-up with my solution.”
The “Command Glove” is a lightweight glove worn by the runner with sensors that control different functions.
“We made the glove with sensors for different functions to control the (music) device,” Hardin says. The middle finger houses three sensors – one each for play, fast forward, and rewind – while the ring finger has the sensors to raise or lower the volume.
“We are patent pending on the concept and the device,” Hardin says.
Gary Armstrong, President of Maverick Systems Inc. in Knoxville, has worked with Hardin to develop the prototype. Now that they know it works, Hardin is seeking $450,000 to miniaturize the core device that controls the sensors and sends the appropriate signals to the iPhone /iPod or music device and cover the initial production run.
While the initial customer target is runners, both serious and casual, Hardin sees many other applications that range from sports to aerial photography. All would focus on wirelessly controlling devices.
“It’s like a (computer) mouse,” he says, “It’s a new, more efficient interface.”
Hardin is a Knoxville native and resident who is a commercial airline pilot based in New York City and a member of the Air National Guard at McGhee Tyson. He’s named his new enterprise Joyce Development LLC in honor of his mother.
While manufacturing might not make sense to locate here, Hardin does plan to locate his headquarters and warehousing operations in his hometown.