After browsing dozens of holiday gift guides this year, we felt a gaping hole in our hearts. Where’s the list for you, Mr./Mrs. Built Industry Tech Leader?
Introducing the BuiltWorlds Gear Guide 2017. It’s a master list of the 40 most groundbreaking and impactful technological gear for industry professionals today. Think IoT devices, scanners, jobsite WiFi, drones, AR/VR, 3D cameras, and any other tech gear that helps you get the job done. For your browsing pleasure, we broke the guide down into three different personas: VDC specialist, Construction Manager, and Craft Worker. Don’t worry, the share link to send to your boss or loved one is at the bottom of this post.
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HTC VIVE is already a powerful headset, but with TPCast, an adapter designed exclusively for VIVE, you can navigate your designed space virtually and wirelessly.
Cost: VIVE $1,200 (Business Edition) ; TPCast wireless adapter $399
Not just for gamers. Connecting with your PC, enter and navigate your 3D models for better design perspective, or give your clients an immersive look into their future building.
The ultimate mixed-reality experience, complete with 360 degree audio. Built in camera means no need for base stations. Also offers the highest visual resolution on our list.
A full system designed by Innoactive, allowing you to set up a virtual reality installation for your VIVE in your office or travel to the site. An integrated rechargeable power supply allows for true location flexibility.
Navigate your designs in a true-to-scale virtual environment. Compatible with most 3D modeling software (SketchUp, Revit, Rhino, etc.) and both desktop and mobile VR headsets. Solve implementation problems before breaking ground.
Cost: Plans start at $40 per user / month
For presentations, virtual project tours, video conferencing, or just to impress your clients, the PF1000UW Smart Theater Projector from LG will deliver and in style. The compact and handsome design is a far cry from the traditional, boxy video projectors dominating the market. Most of all, you won’t have to put it at one end of a 15-foot room in order to get a big picture. This projector will cast a 100” display from a distance of only 15′, meaning you can use this thing in any room in the office.
Get fully spherical photos (14MP) or videos (1080p) using EarthCam’s Site Tour Camera Kit, which comes with a 64” compass-equipped monopod. WiFi connection and integration with their Site Tour app lets you or your client tour the space from their phone to check the on-site progress.
This 4K camera uses structured light sensing technology to automatically scan 360 degrees in 30 seconds. Get implementation feedback on your designs and let your client and design team get a tour of the work.
A handheld 3D LiDAR scanner from Paracosm. It’s brand new and it’s already changing the game. Considering it can create a color data map at a 100 yd range, it’s not hard to see why. Get this device to the project site and have the color 3D scans sent to your VR device via a simple URL. Comes with an Apple iPad Mini 4 and PX-80 Capture software.
Surveying, imaging, and 3D scanning all in one compact and durable mechanical station. Both models offer easy-to-use touchscreen displays, the C5 in color.
The high-precision, handheld laser 3D scanner from FARO is your solution to quick and accurate scanning in tight spaces. We’re talking ultimate mobility and precision within 1mm.
StructionSite is the fastest, simplest way to capture your jobsite using a 360 camera or just your standard mobile device. Combining standard photos, 360 photos, and 360 videos with a live chat interface, the team as StructionSite puts the jobsite at your fingertips via a mobile device or web browser. Top performing teams at ENR Top 20 companies like DPR and PCL construction use StructionSite during their weekly design coordination meetings and OAC meetings as their source of truth for what is going on out in the field. At the end of the project StructionSite produces a set of relative-hyperlinked PDF’s which allow the owner to virtually revisit the site and see through their walls and ceilings.
Reliable onsite WiFi is a necessity and hard to come by. DeWalt has given us a durable (withstands 10’ drops), mountable, secure, and powerful solution. Easy to set up on the jobsite and maintains connection with roaming devices.
Distributing these unobtrusive little devices to your craft workers will bring far-reaching visibility to your jobsite. Real-time location tracking, alert capabilities, safety reporting, and automatic badge-in/badge-out features make this tech a no-brainer. Also, keep an eye out for Spot-R’s EquipTags, which will integrate with the Belt Clips to monitor operator identity and track equipment activity data.
DJI’s impressive, versatile flying machine with a built-in 4K camera. For work or for fun.
A high-performance, fully customizable flight platform taking advantage of DJI’s DSK developer software. Adding to that a 40-minute flight time makes it ideal for professional use.
A full, all-inclusive drone system workhorse, designed specifically for high-precision field capture, data insights, and autonomous flight path calculation. Integrates wirelessly with the included data processing software.
Cost: $30,000+ /yr
Monitor the jobsite and track project progress with Oxblue’s pan-tilt-zoom mounted camera. Choose from resolutions up to 24 megapixels, add on a wire-free solar power option, and start capturing valuable real-time and time-lapse images.
This head-mounted tablet with voice recognition allows the worker or supervisor to operate tools and equipment hands-free while safely maneuvering through the worksite. The visual display, which appears as a 7” tablet at arm’s length, can be directed to edit documentation, view floorplans, or access other necessary jobsite data. As an added safety bonus, the wearer is tracked by GPS and gyroscopic sensors.
Protect your team with lightweight assist devices by Ekso. While operating heavy tools like demo hammers, impact wrenches, and rivet busters, these bionic devices take the load off the craft worker while increasing productivity and work quality. Based on their customer testimonials, Ekso claims they can cut your total job cost in half.
With the Myo Armband from Thalmic Labs, a construction manager can interact wirelessly with other devices on the jobsite (drones, smart glasses, worker electronics) by utilizing five distinct arm gestures. Deficiencies identified on the project site can be assigned to onsite contractors on the move, without carrying a laptop or other device. Integrated with Bridgit’s Closeout task-logging software, deficiency completion and punch list management have never been simpler.
Cost: Myo Armband $199
Track all tools and machinery at the project site with water and dust-free Asset Tags. They employ positioning and motion technology as well as a call button for emergencies. Smart Badges accompany workers, alerting the user with an alarm and strobe when they have crossed into a hazard zone. A messaging screen also makes for useful and easy communication.
The most comfortable and accurate way to monitor your workers’ heart rate activity (ECG, HRV, MET) and step count. The small device slips into the compression sleeve below the wrist and your workers can operate tools and machinery unbothered by a bulky wristband.
A 2-in-1 that can withstand dust, debris, water, and a 4’ drop, giving it an impressive IP65 rating. This device is designed to be incredibly versatile and portable with a fully detachable screen, extra bright display for outdoor use, and hot-swappable (device stays powered on) twin batteries.
Cost: Starting at $3,000
This highly customizable 12” laptop is built like a tank, which makes sense since its design meets several military-standard requirements. Its IP65 durability rating means that it will hold its own on the construction site. Each entry point is even sealed by compression gaskets to keep out dust. And leave your gloves on. The touchscreen is designed to respond to gloved hands.
Cost: Starting at $3,399
A smaller, 17-lb power station that still packs an impressive 39.6Ah capacity. Bring it to and from the jobsite to power lighting and laptops via its three USB ports, 12V carport, and two surge-protected AC outlets. Compatible with Goal Zero’s separate solar panel charging system.
Stylish and comfortable, the DayDream View is the simplest way to immerse yourself in your project environment from wherever you are. Drop your phone in and go.
Samsung’s portable, more affordable option powered by Oculus. It’s compatible solely with Samsung Galaxy phones, but the Galaxy’s display quality will give you one of the higher-resolution experiences available.
A rugged portable charger to bring to work with you every day. Rated IP67, it’s built to withstand everything from dust to water on the construction site. Clip it to your belt with the included carabiner and don’t worry when you accidentally hit it with your hammer.
A high-capacity (132Ah) workhorse, built to power everything from tools to a refrigerator. Four USB ports, three different 12V ports, and two surge-protected AC outlets make it incredibly versatile, and the replaceable Li-ion battery can be recharged via AC or solar panel (sold separately). Your whole team will thank you.
Cost: $1399 (holiday sale price)
Super durable and can be fastened to your tools in a variety of ways, these 2” devices will track the position of whatever they’re stuck to using Milwaukee’s ONE-KEY app. The coin cell batteries will last a full year.
A baseball cap that monitors a worker’s fatigue using EEG sensing technology. Completely non-invasive, it warns the user if they are progressing toward a microsleep state. Supervisors can monitor their team’s alertness levels in real time using the LifeApp.
A waterproof, drop proof (up to 1.8 meters) smartphone by Cat with built-in FLIR thermal imaging capability. IP Certified and reinforced with a die-cast frame and a Corning Gorilla Glass touchscreen.
The GoPro Hero6 is incredibly compact and powerful, with 4K Ultra HD video and GoPro’s signature stabilization technology. There are many ways to fasten the device to your gear so you can document work completed or share deficiencies with your team. Paired with ComDo’s BlinkX controller, it allows you to schedule time lapse sessions for tracking project progression with the added bonus of GoPro’s incredibly compact size.
On those cold days at the outdoor worksite, operating equipment can become more dangerous when the craft worker’s movement is restricted by bulky layers of clothing. This heated jacket is designed to allow for full range of motion, while heating the wearer from the chest and back. The small, external Li-ion has a runtime of up to 8 hours.
About the size of a smartwatch, this device monitors the wearer’s fatigue by tracking their sleep and wake periods. The small screen displays the wearer’s fatigue score, notifying them or their supervisor of impairment. Data can be generated into fatigue reports, aiding in optimal schedule management.
Illuminate your workspace in 360 degrees, while making you visible to your team and to pedestrians at a distance of a quarter mile. The Halo Light is rugged and can survive a 25-foot drop, water submersion, and being run over by an SUV (just in case). Connects easily to your helmet and operates cordless for up 34 hours on a single charge.
The ET110 is an easy-to-use meter that detects and measures concentration levels of carbon monoxide (0 to 1,000ppm) and temperature (oF/oC), making it the perfect solution for HVAC professionals. This reliable new meter keeps tradespeople on the job safe from dangerous carbon monoxide buildup with audible and visual alarms for CO detection. Other features include an easy-to-read backlit display and auto-power off to conserve battery life.
A compact yet powerful device with 4K camera on-board. Drone and remote controller collapse and can be carried in a small shoulder bag. View out-of-reach structural damage in detail or impressively document your team’s progress.
The benefits of smartwatches on a jobsite are pretty clear: answer work messages and calls without pulling out your phone, use GPS tracking to document your location, monitor your heart rate and steps throughout the workday. But a rough, wet, and dirty construction site is no place for a smartwatch, right? Actually, the Gear S3 Frontier is IP68 certified, so it is. Compatible with Android and iOS devices.