Lofelt raises $5.4M to develop next-gen haptic tech for gaming, AR, VR, automobile, and more – TechCrunch

Lofelt, a Berlin-based startup that is developing ‘next-generation’ haptic technology for use in a range of products — including gaming, AR, VR, automobile, consumer electronics, toys, medical, and entertainment — has raised $5.4 million in Series A funding. Leading the round is Wolfman.One, with participation from Q Venture Partners, Coparion, and previous backer Horizons Ventures.

Lofelt describes its mission as wanting to “create a natural connection between people and their digital devices” via improved haptic feedback tech, and argues that until now the technology hasn’t benefited from the same pace of innovation seen in screen and audio technologies. To address this, the company has created a hardware and software platform designed to let companies add haptic features to their products and which takes the tech’s utility beyond gaming or mobile phones.

It is also the startup behind the rather left-field Basslet, a watch-styled “subwoofer” that vibrates to create a sub bass-like sensation for an improved audio experience when coupled with headphones. That proved an interesting use of Lofelt’s tech but as a standalone product our very own Brian Heater came away unconvinced.

“Whilst conventional actuator companies like ALPS, Precision Microdrives, AAC Technologies only produce hardware, Lofelt is the only company delivering the complete hardware, software and user-experience solution, ready for mass-production,” a spokesperson for the startup tells me.

“Lofelt’s technology offers three distinct advantages compared to other solutions: Our actuators are completely silent, the audio-driven concept drives our actuators over a wide frequency band, producing ultra-realistic haptic feedback, [and our] software is designed in conjunction with our hardware, resulting in optimum power, control and efficiency”.

As a result, Lofelt’s haptic solution for gaming & VR can be integrated without the need for additional developer support. “It delivers rich and realistic haptics with all games, movies and music out of the box,”

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