First Ever IoT-enabled Firefighter Helmet Provides ‘Superpowers’ Through Augmented Reality


Rackspace TechnologyTM (NASDAQ: RXT), a leading end-to-end multicloud technology solutions company, has announced working with Qwake Technologies, a provider of revolutionary visual communication technology for firefighters, to accelerate Qwake’s cloud-native approach. Qwake’s product allows firefighters to more effectively navigate and communicate in low-visibility environments through its platform, which leverages the use of an Internet of Things (IoT) architecture.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), fires claim over 180,000 lives each year. The long-term impacts of fires also include property damage, lost productivity, and disruption to the environment. To help minimize danger and damage, Qwake Technologies set out to develop the world’s first IoT-enabled, wearable solution, to support the C-THRU breakthrough Visual Communication technology. 

The augmented reality (AR), helmet-worn device includes cellular and Wi-Fi connected technology that helps firefighters navigate and maintain awareness of their surroundings. Data is transmitted to a tablet application that provides the incident commander real-time video feeds and accountability tools to coordinate their efforts. Finally, a cloud archive provides real-time incident analytics, damage assessment, and training forensics to better understand the incident, both during and after it has concluded.

To make this technology a reality, the company partnered with Onica, a Rackspace Technology company and AWS Premier Consulting Partner, to implement the cloud-native ecosystem required to support this cutting-edge IoT and augmented reality device.

“Working with the experts at Rackspace Technology allowed us to leverage cloud native with confidence,” said, Sam Cossman, CEO at Qwake Technologies. “We had the idea, vision, and overall augmented reality solutions in place, but Rackspace Technology took us to the next level with their deep IoT and cloud native expertise.”

Qwake Technologies’ AR Navigation and Visual Communication platform is the first and only cloud-enabled firefighting solution of its kind and represents a significant technological advancement for a segment that hasn’t seen much technology innovation. The device, which enables two-way visual communication and personal navigation, allows an otherwise smoke-filled house to appear clear and direction able.

“Qwake Technologies is creating life-saving devices that are transforming the way firefighters do their jobs,” said Jeff DeVerter, CTO Solutions at Rackspace Technology. “With so much on the line, a tech failure simply isn’t an option. In working with Qwake, the Rackspace Technology team knew cloud native and top-tier IoT connectivity was pivotal to the project’s success. We’re proud to support Qwake in its journey to improve the lives of both firefighters and citizens.”

About Rackspace Technology:

Rackspace Technology is a leading end-to-end multicloud technology services company. We can design, build and operate our customers’ cloud environments across all major technology platforms, irrespective of technology stack or deployment model. We partner with our customers at every stage of their cloud journey, enabling them to modernize applications, build new products and adopt innovative technologies.

About Qwake Technologies:

“Reducing Chaos & Improving Performance through Visual Communication” San Francisco based startup focused on public safety innovation, providing revolutionary connected technology to improve individual performance and team coordination in high stress, time-critical environments.