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Density raises $4 million to track crowds at the DMV, theme parks and corporate campuses

ICE Graveyard 27/07/2016 Megan Rose Dickey

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The Department of Motor Vehicles is one of the most notorious ways to waste your life away. Density could help ease this pain. Today, Density is launching its people-counting sensor for measuring how many people are inside a space at any given time. The company is also announcing a $4 million Series A round led by Upfront Ventures Managing Partner Mark Suster with participation from Ludlow ventures, Jason Calacanis, Dawn Patrol, Hiten Shah and Arjun Sethi. Density had previously raised a $200,000 seed round from the likes of Jonathon Triest of Ludlow Ventures, Calacanis and Matthew Paulson.

Density is a self-installable, Wi-Fi powered unit that you mount above a doorway to count how many people are coming in and out of a location. The device is also modular, meaning that as Density updates the technology in the sensors, customers will be able to swap out the old sensor for the new one.

“Sensor as a service,” Farah said, “is the future of all hardware.”

Density’s people-counter sensor is free, but the company sells the access to the data it generates for $25 per location per month. For all you privacy phobes out there, don’t worry, Density doesn’t capture who you are — it just captures the body using infrared light as illumination in conjunction with a specialized depth sensor, Density co-founder and CEO Andrew Farah told me. Although the tech is relatively complicated, the concept is super straight forward — it’s simply a matter of counting plus ones and minus ones. That’s it.

“If we succeed, it will be boring — like electricity,” Farah said. “You won’t notice when it’s there but it will be irritating without it.”

With Density’s API, business customers can count how many people enter and exit a physical space and integrate it into their pre-existing software solutions. Already, Density’s customers include a network of homeless shelters, Ivy League colleges, theme parks and Uber.

“Density will allow us to accurately understand foot traffic and occupancy at our support centers,” Uber NYC General Manager Josh Mohrer said in a statement. “The data we will receive is invaluable to better staffing and delivering the best service to our partners when they come in to visit.”

Other use cases entail real-time discounting, space utilization for corporate campuses and real-time conference room availability. Check out Density in action below.

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