Pakistan’s reliance on imported smart wheelchairs may end soon as the first ever locally-manufactured product is set to enter the market.
A student in the electrical engineering graduate program at Lahore University of Management Sciences’ (LUMS) Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering has developed a voice-operated smart wheelchair named GOBEE.
A press statement issued by LUMS states that the wheelchair is equipped with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, and has a remote control which goes beyond the range of 100 feet. Further, it says that the product is water repellent and anti-rusting, and has an anti-sweat technology sofa seat.
The student, Faaiz Arbab, has been recognized for his effort by the National Design Awards (NDA) Pakistan who have selected the product for the 2018 Consumer Product Design Award.
Through his company, Ayub Yaqoob Engineering Company (AYECo), the student has already started distributing GOBEE in the Pakistani market. After its compliance with International Health Regulations (IHR) of World Health Organization (WHO), Arbab plans to start exporting the product.
The press statement mentions that he had prepared the initial design of the product several years ago while pursuing his undergraduate degree in engineering at the University of Engineering and Technology (UET) Lahore. He didn’t submit the design to the National Incubation Center (NIC) at LUMS because he was not sure if the idea would be acknowledged. However, he resumed work on the product as he started his graduate education at LUMS.
Arbab plans to improve the design of the wheelchair in the future by equipping it with an IP Camera and Artificial Intelligence technology.