There are few tools as useful as the measuring tape. It is essential for any construction or renovation work, and are used for many other purposes like tailoring and body measurements. However, measuring tapes have generally taken the same form throughout their history: usually a cloth or plastic tape with markings for measuring.
The Bagel smart measuring tape breaks from this tradition. It integrates technology into the measuring process to improve accuracy, convenience, and versatility. This is a product that aims to fill holes in the current measurement process, such as using tape that is too stiff for curved surfaces or too soft for flat surfaces, memorizing measurements while working, and trying to read small markings that are crowded with both standard and metric increments.
This measuring tape has advanced quickly from an idea to a functional tool ready for sale. This is due to both the ingenuity of its creators and the incredible support by backers on sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Clearly, the vision of the Bagel Labs team struck a chord with enough people who felt that measuring tapes could be improved to quickly fund this project.
The People Behind the Product
- Soohong Park, Ph.D. is the CEO of Bagel Labs. With an engineering background from Cambridge University, he used his passion for innovation to lead the way for this new technology to emerge.
- June Park is a product designer, and has overseen the design of this product. Interestingly, he also came up with the Bagel name.
- Myungjong Kim has a background in hardware engineering, with experience in robotics. His invaluable contribution to the product is the technology driving the measuring tape’s features.
- Dave Byun has studied mathematics and economics, and came to Bagel Labs to handle the financial side of the project after working for investment banks.
- Youngpyo Jeon previously worked at Proctor and Gamble, and is responsible for ensuring products meet or exceed consumer needs.
The Development Process
This unit has rapidly moved from an idea to a marketable product. In June, 2015, the idea of the Bagel measuring tape was created and design began. Prototypes were created and tested in the following October, December, March, and finally in June, 2016.
Following the completion of testing on the final prototype, mass production began in August of this year. Also at this time, the mobile app used to connect a mobile device to the measuring tape was finalized.
Most importantly, the completed product will arrive in November and December for Kickstarter and Indiegogo respectively. The entire process has occurred in only a year and a half.
Versatility: The 3 Modes of the Bagel
The most important development that the Bagel measuring tape has brought to the world of size measurement is versatility. The Bagel recognizes that different surfaces should be measured in different ways to achieve accurate results with ease. For this reason, the Bagel can measure surfaces in three modes: String Mode, Wheel Mode, and Remote Mode.
This mode handles the normal tasks of a traditional tape measure. Pulling on the plastic tip will prevent fingers from being cut when extending the “tape,” which is actually a flexible and durable string. This string extends 10 feet and can withstand over 100 pounds of pressure. Conveniently, the measurement can be read on the digital display screen.
The only drawback here is that without measurements on the string itself, it can be slower marking out increments of every 10 inches, for example. However, the digital screen saves time reading small markings.
While the string is excellent for measuring flat and regular surfaces, some objects are irregularly shaped. For this reason, the Bagel includes a small wheel that can be rolled along an object, measuring its path. It can measure up to 33 feet. This function sets the Bagel apart from any other measuring tape, and makes measuring irregular objects such as upholstery simple even with one hand.
The most high-tech mode, Remote Mode uses a laser pointer to measure the distance from the Bagel to the object pointed at. This is an excellent function for difficult measurements like floor-to-ceiling. It can reach distances over 16 feet, and is excellent for measuring horizontally or vertically.
Not only do the 3 modes make the Bagel an adaptive and versatile measuring tool, it includes technology that makes the user experience fast and simple. It takes memorization out of the process, and makes the most out of connectivity to mobile devices.
Save Measurements and Time
Measurements are saved in the Bagel with a simple click of a button. This means users no longer have to use a pad and pen to record measurements, which saves time while keeping the user focused on the task at hand. Further, voice memos can be recorded alongside measurements to describe what is being measured. These memos will be converted to text when connected to the mobile app. The Bagel itself is able to store up to 100 measurements.
Another convenient feature is the ability to switch between standard and metric measurements with the click of the button. This saves time spent looking at crowded markings, and greatly reduces the risk of recording the wrong measurement.
One of the most attractive features of this device is its ability to connect to mobile devices. This allows measurements to be stored in one safe location. The Bagel can be connected to devices through a free mobile app. This app allows users to look through all of their past measurements, as well as create graphs to track the progress of specific measurements over time. This is particularly useful for tracking body measurements.
One benefit of a traditional measuring tape over a technological device is that users do not need to worry about the tape dying. The Bagel still performs well in this area, however, offering 8 hours of continuous use with a micro-USB charger.
- Height: 1.2 inches
- Length: 3.1 inches
- Width: 3.1 inches
- Weight: 4.2oz
- Casing: Polycarbonate
- String: Dyneema
- String: 10 feet
- Wheel: 33 feet
- Remote: 16 feet
- Display: 0.96 inch OLED
- Storage: 32MB
- Compatibility: Android and iOS
This device embodies the passion and experience of the team behind it. With 3 separate modes of measurement, the Bagel is a versatile tool for a variety of surfaces. Its Bluetooth connectivity and internal storage eliminates the need for writing notes, and makes saving hundreds of measurements easy and accessible
While contractors may prefer a traditional tape for tracking increments, the Bagel is excellent for a variety of uses. Further, the rapid development in its design and technology in the short period since the concept was first introduced is a good indication that Bagel Labs are receptive to consumer needs and will continue refining their products.