Local entrepreneurs make surfaces into remotes

Published: May. 19, 2016 at 6:15 PM CDT
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What if you could control your home with a tap of your fingertips? Two local entrepreneurs are making it a reality for thousands across the country.

Business partners Ohad Nezer Jake Boshernitzan never imagined their College Station startup would go viral. Their business, Knocki, is the number one Kickstarter campaign in the country right now, raising more than $300,000 in less than 48 hours.

"We didn't plan for this even as our best case. This has really exceeded our expectations,” said Nezer.

The company surpassed their $35,000 goal within minutes.

"It takes regular surfaces in your environment -- walls, tables, and doors -- and allows you to control your world through them,” explained Boshernitzan.

The gadget works similar to Morse code. Using vibrations, users assign a number of taps to control different features, including turning on and off lights, brewing coffee while still in bed, ordering a pizza, requesting an Uber, locking the door and more. And Knocki does not take a magic touch.

The setup is simple. You place the Knocki on or under a surface. Then, the device sync's to an app and with other smart devices.

The founders say the big idea was inspired by something very small.

"Our kids have to go through so much trouble to flip a light switch. An idea was, why can't we make a regular wall a light switch? That was really our ah-ha moment,” said Boshernitzan.

The entrepreneurs have tapped and sweated their way to success, but said they could not do it alone.

"Mentors and guidance. Also, a lot of investments came out of this community. We really attribute a lot of our success to the Bryan/College Station community,” said Nezer.

Each device can have up to ten different commands.

The company says they took off after local startup space Seed Sumo accepted them into their highly-competitive accelerator program last summer.