July 10, 2015— Almost everyone these days have at least one touchscreen device such as a tablet and smartphone, which they rely on for almost everything from calls to emails and from games to books to apps. Today’s touch screen devices offer mobility and ease-of-use—except there are limitations especially when nature takes its course. One such example is the challenge of using touchscreen devices during cold weather but people find it hard to fiddle with their devices without exposing their bare hands to the cold.
Jeffrey Jonathan Petracca of Hiaq Thermal, has seen an unmet need in this niche and has come up with FormTouch, a highly insulating glove specially designed to maintain uncompromised dexterity while navigating through touchscreens. This specialized glove aims to become the only go-to substitute for gloves for everyone living in cold areas and would love to still use their phones and tablets. For this Petracca and his team at Hiaq Thermal launches a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter in order to raise $40,000 by July 31.
The Kickstarter campaign aims to raise enough funds from the crowdfunding community in order to cover the initial production run of their one-of-a-kind product. The campaign will allow backers to preorder FormTouch gloves as well as get other Kickstarter-exclusive rewards.
“FormTouch gloves are designed to perform,” says Petracca of the Canada-based company. “FormTouch gloves are warm, form-fitting and waterproof. Their sleek, thin design gives you dexterity and comfort so they can be easily used with your touchscreen device.”
The gloves are made of a specially designed Aerogel composite. Aerogel is an extremely insulating material that has been estimated to be over 10 times as warm as wool. “Our engineering team was so impressed [with Aerogel] that we just knew we had to put it to good use,” says Petracca. “With personal appreciation for the frigid temperatures of the cold Canadian winter, we devised a methodology to harness the extreme warmth that Aerogel could provide and added it to a pair of gloves.”
Aerogel is thin, flexible, and highly insulating. Hiaq mixed it with a thin, stretchy fabric to create the highly specialized composite that goes into FormTouch. This composite makes it possible for the glove to fit the hands perfectly and securely, while innovatively allowing users to seamlessly navigate their touch screen devices amid the cold.
Furthermore, Hiaq also added a hydrophobic coating to create a waterproof glove. Petracca shares to the crowdfunding community, “We wanted you to be able to use our gloves in the rain and snow without ever worrying about getting your hands wet.”
They have also designed FormTouch to have conductive fingertips to be able to accurately navigate through all types of touchscreen devices, something that other apparel insulations and gloves have failed to do. “FormTouch gloves were designed from the very beginning to provide an excellent touchscreen experience. The gloves fit tightly to your hand, as last thing we wanted was a bulky glove that would impede dexterity. The seams are discrete and the finger tips are conductive, providing a natural and responsive feel while using a touchscreen,” says the Canadian entrepreneur.
Petracca has prepared various rewards for backers of the campaign. Aside from the opportunity to preorder their own FormTouch gloves at exclusive Kickstarter prices backers of the campaign can also receive limited-edition FormTouch gloves, personal-size blankets, beer cozies made of Aerogel, and many more.
To find out more, visit Hiaq Thermal.
About Hiaq Thermal
Hiaq Thermal was launched in 2015 by two engineering graduate students from the University of Waterloo.
With a passion for innovation and pushing the boundaries of science, we strive to offer thermal apparel that can perform in today’s world.