Gerben Harmsen speaker at GTDC Summit EMEA 2017

Today, TWNKLS founder Gerben Harmsen is one of the speakers during the GTDC Summit EMEA in Vienna. The Global Technology Distribution Council (GTDC) Summit EMEA 2017 is an exclusive event for IT Channel Executives, channel analysts and the leaders of the top 15 distributors in Europe. During his presentation, Gerben will go through a number of successful real-world cases that show how augmented reality enables Industry 4.0. 

Gerben Harmsen

About the GTDC

The Global Technology Distribution Council (GTDC) is a worldwide industry association dedicated to defining and promoting the role of wholesale distribution in a successful and healthy information technology channel. GTDC members are the largest and most successful distributors, covering 95% of the globe, across 187 countries.

AR to enable Industry 4.0.

Augmented reality (AR) is key to the fourth Industrial Revolution, Industry 4.0. By bringing information into context AR enables a new kind of worker that can learn while doing. Augmented reality offers your worker instant expertise. It empowers them to do a new task first time right. TWNKLS is a leading supplier of practical AR solutions that make Industry 4.0 possible. With our own collaborative STAR Platform we serve our client’s needs. Our high-end applications can be found everywhere from oil rigs to assembly lines.


Empower your operator with the TWNKLS STAR Platform

The TWNKLS STAR Platform is designed for clients that want to give their operators in the field more freedom in their work. The business AR Platform provides your company the benefits of augmented reality without having to commit to something that you know is going to change anyway. No vendor lock-in, no planned obsolescence, full benefits to you and your workers. You are free to apply TWNKLS augmented reality to your business however and at whatever pace you like.

Multimodal tracking platform

Our technology is the basis of the STAR Platform. It consists of a modular system designed to offer robust tracking for every situation. We offer a multimodal tracking platform that implements both our proprietary and 3rd party tracking methods to deal with challenging, real world situations. Future expansions will only strengthen the system.


Optimal tracking for every moment

Our platform supports a host of devices running either Windows, Linux, iOS, or Android. Phones, tablets, and smart glasses. From Meta to Tango, and from Hololens to iPad, the modular make-up ensures optimal tracking for every moment.

This cross-platform, device-agnostic, and tracking agnostic approach is unique in the world, and makes for a robust and futureproof technical basis for your company.

Download the TWNKLS STAR Platform folder.



TWNKLS finalist for the 8th Annual Auggie Awards

In 2013 TWNKLS won the much acclaimed international Auggie Award. This year we have been selected a finalist for Best Enterprise Solution with the WEMO Operator System. Making TWNKLS the only Dutch company in this worldwide contest! On June the 1st the winners will be announced at AWE USA 2017.

The Auggie Awards

The Annual Auggie Awards have been the most recognized industry AR & VR awards in the world since 2010. Now in it’s 8th year, the Auggies continue to showcase the best-of-the-best in the augmented world.

AWE 2017

TWNKLS will be showcasing its new solutions at the Augmented World Expo (AWE) from May 31 till June 2 in Santa Clara, USA. The AWE is the world’s largest conference and expo dedicated to augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality.

TWNKL’s Daniel van der Schoor will be presenting some case studies concerning Industry 4.0. and dr. ir Dragos Dactu will give a presentation on how augmented reality can enhance security.



Robert Boers (former Oracle) joins TWNKLS as CEO

Winning awards for its innovative technologies in augmented reality (AR) and implementing these for large international clients worldwide, TWNKLS has grown quickly since its start in 2011. TWNKLS opened its doors on May 1st 2017 to Robert Boers, former EMEA Operations Leader at Oracle, welcoming him on board as CEO. Boers has vast experience leading organizational growth in the IT sector, making him a seasoned operations expert with a passion for change. As CEO, Boers will help TWNKLS into its next stage. In an interview, he tells us more about his ambitious plans for TWNKLS. 

Foto Robert Boers

What are your ambitions for TWNKLS?

We want to make AR more accessible to clients and accessible to more clients. Gerben Harmsen, Lex van der Sluijs (founders) and I identified two focus areas: achieving scalable growth and moving towards a product offer for the market. To do this, we’ve launched the TWNKLS STAR Platform.

TWNKLS STAR Platform is designed for clients that want to give their operators in the field more freedom in their work. Whether it’s a police officer, paramedic, maintenance engineer or sales rep, the AR technologies have been built to provide the operator with detailed and accurate information, quickly and conveniently. In other words, the right information at the right time and place.

TWNKLS STAR Platform is:

  • Modular: tracking, measuring and collaborative technologies can be combined to best fit the business case.
  • Flexible: direct access to new developments and the updates that are becoming available at a rapid pace in AR.
  • Compatible with multiple operating systems and devices like tablets, eyewear and mobile phones. Even detailed CAD data can be presented for viewing on small screens.
  • Seamlessly integrated with operating data from ERP, SEM, MES or other sources.
  • Sector-specific solutions in 4 areas: Healthcare, Security, Industrial and Commerce.

What do you bring to the table at TWNKLS?

TWNKLS currently serves its clients on a case-by-case basis. Each solution is tailor-made, but labor-intensive. I will create the right balance of resources within TWNKLS for establishing scalable and sustainable business processes.

At Oracle I worked on mergers and acquisitions and numerous transitional change programs such as bringing Oracle Applications from a product (license) business model to a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model. Over the years, this has given me quite some first-hand experience at bringing about change and working with people, processes and products.

Why did TWNKLS choose you?

Gerben and Lex are clearly passionate about what they do and what they have built up at TWNKLS. As TWNKLS grew, so did their responsibilities. They recognized that they needed help to realize their ambitions. That takes courage. I’m an operations man. A better balance between technology, commerce and operations will help the company to flourish in all areas.

Why did you choose TWNKLS?

For the adventure. My last program at Oracle was the transformation to digital marketing. Though exciting, I missed the client contact. AR is a field where big players like Apple and Google are making large investments. And while TWNKLS is still relatively young, they’re at least 2-3 years ahead of the market. Unlike many others in the field, TWNKLS has a track record of delivering real AR solutions to real customers with real business benefits. I’m looking forward to further developing the dreams of TWNKLS and its clients.

How will you preserve that special TWNKLS factor?

The client focus is in the DNA of TWNKLS. No matter how the company grows – or how quickly – we will use creativity to develop AR solutions that work and that always contribute to the performance of our clients and their operators.



TWNKLS reaches out to future innovators at Night of the Nerds

On May the 16th, TWNKLS will be present at the Night of the Nerds in Eindhoven. This event is set up for high school kids to get to know the world of digital creativity, technology, and innovation. Besides AR and VR it has a host of coding, gaming, and digital arts to see and experience, as well as a host of experienced nerds to show the current state of the art.

Like every year, TWNKLS will reach out to the future innovators. At this youth-oriented event, we will hold a number of Hololens demos as well as a Hololens masterclass for students of Fontys ICT.

Night of the Nerds 2016

At TWNKLS we understand the importance for high school kids and students to make a well-informed decision when choosing their educational path. Everyone at TWNKLS has been a student and made the choice to do things that inspire and excite them, and make our eyes “sparkle and twinkle”. We understand which choices students have to make and the things they have to take into consideration. Therefore, we reach out to high school kids and students in the process of making these choices. By participating in Night of The Nerds for example.

Night of the Nerds will take place at the Klokgebouw in Eindhoven, and will begin at 12:00 till 21:00 hrs.

Free entrance

Feel free to come by and visit us! To get your free tickets, use code RELATIES.



Client in the spotlight: WEMO

When shopping for the best Augmented Reality (AR) solution, no two clients are the same. However, they often do have similar questions and concerns. Here, we share the journey of one of our clients, WEMO, before they decided to work with TWNKLS.

Together with WEMO, specialist in designing and building high output machine lines for forming sheet metal into an end or a half product, TWNKLS created an application for HoloLens that enables a machine operator to independently run a full production facility that consists of one or more WEMO production lines. Paul Hoekstra, Managing Director of WEMO, tells us their customer journey and shares his insights. 

What challenge were you facing at WEMO when you contacted TWNKLS?

At WEMO, only a trained machine operator can work with our line, even with our current simple human machine interface. Some of our clients, for example in China and the USA, regularly face the problem that their machine operators suddenly leave the company for a higher paying position elsewhere. It is costly and time-consuming to hire a new machine operator and train them to work with the interface. To address this problem, WEMO was focused on how to make their human machine interface so that anyone could operate it. In other words, we were looking for a way to make the work of the end-user (the operator) as easy and efficient as possible. Finally, in order to apply industry 4.0, we needed more than just a nice marketing term; we needed a real pragmatic solution!

What made you decide to look externally for a new solution?

WEMO strives to continuously innovate in order to expand on our unique selling points and to stay ahead in the market; we invest 5% of our revenues each year in innovation. Furthermore, we wanted to bring our service up to an even higher level, looking not only at the client request and the technology, but also at the needs of the end user. How can we make the work of the operator easier to improve efficiency? It is important to us to keep a focus on people and in this way to enable the human and the machine to learn from each other.

How did you make the decision to work with TWNKLS?

We first looked at who in the AR world was capable of taking something that already exists – our human machine interface with additional service options – and converting that into a holographic operator system by using augmented reality. That narrowed it down to just a few candidates worldwide, including TWNKLS. Besides the fact that TWNKLS is a Dutch company with very good references, there was also a personal click between the colleagues at WEMO and TWNKLS. Finally, we both operate in the highest segment of our own technology.

How do you find the collaboration with TWNKLS?

Perfect: we can read and write together, we share the same DNA and we are both motivated by the same drive and passion. Also, we are challenging each other constantly.

What advice would you give to others thinking about implementing augmented reality for their organization?

Think carefully about what you want to use it for beforehand. Spend enough time setting up the right scope. It can be overwhelming having so many possibilities to choose from with AR.


A safer, more secure world with Augmented Reality

Recently, TWNKLS teamed up with the Dutch police and the Delft University of Technology to have a closer look at how AR can add value in the domain of safety and security; and with very positive results! Here we share some of the lessons we’ve learned.

Safety & security

From saving lives to safeguarding sensitive information, there is a lot at stake for operators in the safety and security industries. The slightest error can have grave consequences, and operators rely heavily on the tools available to them. That’s where TWNKLS comes in. Before diving into the technology and possible AR solutions, we had to identify the areas that needed the most attention.

Case study: police – challenges of the traditional approach

Simply stated: field agents report to the office at the start of their shift for briefing. They make a plan for the day and then go out into the field to take action. Any updates on new incidents received at the control center are communicated simultaneously to all field agents. An agent in the area, when available, will respond as soon as possible for more detail. At the end of their shift, the field agents report back and are required to document the various incidents of the day from memory.

In this example, we see challenges in three main areas: (1) coordination of agents in the field by a centralized control center, (2) communication of new incidents and (3) delayed reporting.

Advantages of AR for safety & security:

TWNKLS is currently developing a new AR system to address these types of challenges. To do so effectively, we are building on 5 years of scientific findings from the Delft University of Technology in this area. The AR system offers the following advantages:

  • More informed decision-making due to detailed situational awareness.
  • Action made possible in much shorter time frames with instant information exchange.
  • Greater accuracy with high-precision tracking and minimal margin of error.
  • Improved collaboration between distributed individuals and teams.
  • Increased common understanding among people with different knowledge and expertise with visual communication tools.
  • Quicker reporting and less paperwork with accurate and instant documentation.

Lessons learned

Three lessons that stood out from working with AR in the safety & security domain:

EMPOWER THE INDIVIDUAL: The best way to coordinate a large number of field agents is to empower them to do it themselves. Provide them with the right information at the right time, as well as the tools to take action directly. Enabling them to collaborate requires creating a common understanding and a common language for them to communicate effectively.

MINIMIZE PERIPHERAL TASKS: AR can be used to minimize the amount of time spent on tasks that are related to the core work being done. For example, by making reporting easy and instantaneous for the field agents, more time can be spent on the investigative work needed to make decisions and take action.

MAKE CHANGE FAMILIAR: Integrating the technology into the existing way of working leads to faster, more natural adoption of a new system. Our technology is designed to work with a range of devices including smartphones, tablets and eyewear, depending on what is most practical. One more reason the end users were enthusiastic about the AR system is that it’s a lot of fun to work with, too!


The core technologies

-       High-precision tracking with TWNKLS’ state-of-the-art SLAM system.

  • Accurate GPS tracking both outdoor and indoor with a miniscule margin of error,
  • Real-time location & mapping for better coordination and communication between various remote and field agent,
  • 3D scanning for accurate reconstruction of a room or landscape,
  • Effective filtering of information for field agents based on their location so they receive relevant and timely information.

-       Remote AR collaboration.

  • Real-time audio-video feed for multiple remote parties,
  • Visual cues and annotation can be shared directly on the screen,
  • Notes and images can be saved directly for documentation purposes.

Future of collaborative AR

Looking ahead, we see a future for collaborative AR that incorporates Empathic Computer technology. Addressing the challenges of working remotely, this technology enhances empathy among distributed users when engaged in collaborative AR shared experiences.

You can also read this article titled ‘Dutch Police discovers an ar system to identify criminals’ which was published on Infinityleap.

TWNKLS at the Augmented World Expo (AWE) USA 2017

From May 31 till June 2, the 8th Augmented World Expo (AWE) will take place in Santa Clara, USA. AWE is the world’s largest conference and expo dedicated to augmented reality (AR), virtual reality and mixed reality. TWNKLS will be present with a booth where we will showcase successful implementations of AR with regard to training and instruction, maintenance & repair, remote expert and measure & visualization. TWNKL’s founder Gerben Harmsen will be presenting some case studies concerning Industry 4.0. and dr. ir Dragos Dactu will give a presentation on how augmented reality can enhance security.

About AWE

This year’s conference and expo will showcase speakers, startups and organizations who are using AR & VR to drive economic growth, encourage empathy and collaboration, democratize healthcare and education, and promote sustainability in the world.

The Auggie Awards

The Annual Auggie Awards have been the most recognized industry AR & VR awards in the world since 2010. Now in it’s 8th year, the Auggies continue to showcase the best-of-the-best in the augmented world. TWNKLS has been nominated in the category ‘Best Enterprise Solution’ with the WEMO Operator System. Public voting is now open. On June the 1st the winners will be announced at AWE USA 2017.

High-res image WemoLens3

Augmenting Collaboration

Currently, TWNKLS is focusing on something special: collaborative AR. This enables people to work together from anywhere in the world, supported by each other and by AR technology. Whether for healthcare sector, security or for technical maintenance, the core is helping people to collaborate and solve problems, and to present them with the right information at the right place and time. During the AWE, TWNKLS will– for the very first time – be presenting to the public their collaborative AR platform. In short, a true premiere.


TWNKLS nominated for Dutch Interactive Award

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TWNKLS is nominated for a Dutch Interactive Award, category B2B with the WEMO Operator System case. Together with WEMO, specialist in machine building and machine components, TWNKLS created an application for HoloLens which lets an operator run a full production line by himself.

The Dutch Interactive Awards are the prizes for the best interactive work. The nominations were announced April the 5th and the ceremony will take place on Thursday, June 1st, 2017 at the Beurs van Berlage in Amsterdam.

DIA .png-large

TWNKLS HoloLens workshop @ MaintenanceNEXT

From 11 to 13 April, MaintenanceNEXT 2017 will be the epicentre of the maintenance industry. This industry event will focus on employment, innovation and value creation in maintenance and repair. TWNKLS will be present during this event: the 11th of April we will hold an Operator 2.0 HoloLens and Google Tango workshop where our experts let you experience augmented reality for yourself.

MaintenanceNEXT logo

Operator 2.0

Together with WEMO, specialist in machine building and machine components, TWNKLS created an application for HoloLens which lets an operator run a full production line by himself. WEMO expects to be 35% faster, and to make 90% fewer mistakes. We will hold a do-it-yourself workshop where you can be the operator and experience augmented reality for yourself. You can sign-up to join our workshop.

We are looking forward to meet you and talk to you about our maintenance enabling technology!

 Bezoeker workshop

AR: interaction between humans and knowledge

‘Mastering assets; partnering for performance’ is the theme of this year’s MaintenanceNEXT. Mastering Assets goes a step further than simply ‘managing’ assets. In order to help a client as quickly and efficiently as possible maintenance professionals need full control of the installations. By supporting those employees with advanced technology and relevant AR lets them excel in their field. That is exactly what AR is about: the interaction between humans and knowledge.

Decrease downtime

Using AR can make your workers’ daily work easier and help them solve problems in a quick and efficient way. Let a remote expert see what you are seeing and guide you through the process in a visual, step by step way. All you need is a normal phone or tablet. This method has been proven to not only work more effectively, but can also shorten the time spent solving a problem. Less downtime, less money wasted, happier users.

Practical information workshop

Don’t forget to get your free ticket for MaintenanceNEXT!