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Dive into Spimes

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Last week I got a recall request from Suunto, the company making sports watches and wrist computers for various activities, including diving which I’ve been practising since 2003. The wireless pressure sensor, connected directly to the high pressure output of the dive tank, could reportedly burst during a regular surface test. Not that this would be a huge explosion, but the sensor is usually near your head so there’s a potential risk of injury.

Recalls are quite usual, especially in the automotive industry when new models and materials are introduced. But what makes this case interesting and my respect-earning for Suunto what comes to sustainability is that my tank sensor is 12 years old. (My Saab is 14 years old and there’s not even a company to do recalls anymore.)

Suunto promises to verify and fix the sensor, replace the battery and even gives a one-year additional warranty after the upgrade has been completed – assuming I register my device into their portal.

In addition to being a way to avoid litigation or just being a clever public relations move, the company could, with some additional planning, utilize it also as a way to connect all their sensors back to the mothership and thus create a (more frequent than every 12th year) data feed from customers like me.

On the Suunto backstage, it would now be the time to create a Digital Twin for each upgraded sensor and use various communication channels (as simple as sending a picture of a sensor’s status window) to keep it up to date with safety standards and new developments. Over time, new sensors with full spimes and real-time connectivity could be offered to customers by using wealth of data regarding their actual usage and device performance.

This would be a bold move with a lot of naysayers around, but like in many other industries, if your company won’t move into Digital Twins and eventually into Spimes with all products, it’s your competition who gets there first. The time to act is now.

//Pasi

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