Of course, the StartCap design itself means nothing without a good RFID reader to identify the moment a bottle is opened. We’ve upgraded the backend kit with a MetraTec UHF reader that can be fitted to a number of external antennas. 
A temperamental piece of kit but it does allow for customisation in any programming language. 

Of course, the StartCap design itself means nothing without a good RFID reader to identify the moment a bottle is opened. We’ve upgraded the backend kit with a MetraTec UHF reader that can be fitted to a number of external antennas. 

A temperamental piece of kit but it does allow for customisation in any programming language. 

StartCap logo

StartCap logo

PROTOTYPE_30.4
CONSTRUCTING STARTCAP1.0
The key design elements in our most successful prototype:
Transparent paper covering the first RFID tag to avoid the loose tag catching on sticky foil.
Perforation on one side of the foil to create a weak side on the StartCap. This weak side easily breaks when opened propelling the loose tag away.

PROTOTYPE_30.4

CONSTRUCTING STARTCAP1.0

The key design elements in our most successful prototype:

  • Transparent paper covering the first RFID tag to avoid the loose tag catching on sticky foil.
  • Perforation on one side of the foil to create a weak side on the StartCap. This weak side easily breaks when opened propelling the loose tag away.
PROTOTYPE_30.4 

THE GOLDEN CHILD
After nearly 50 design iterations we perfected the StartCap design with Prototype_30.4. It contains a reinforced plastic collar around the neck and a beautiful golden arrow to let the user know the correct way to open the bottle. Now the fun part begins. What should we connect StartCap to?
PROTOTYPE_30.4 

THE GOLDEN CHILD

After nearly 50 design iterations we perfected the StartCap design with Prototype_30.4. It contains a reinforced plastic collar around the neck and a beautiful golden arrow to let the user know the correct way to open the bottle.

Now the fun part begins. What should we connect StartCap to?

PROTOTYPE_30

PROTOTYPE_30 :: The eureka moment
Today we discovered two RFID tags cancel each other out when one is attached to sticky-backed foil. This makes Prototype_30 completely undetectable to the reader when unopened. 
By folding the other RFID chip inside the foil-backed tag we can create a spring that will propel it from the bottle neck and onto the floor when opened.
The ‘spring loaded’ design does, however, put a lot of force on the glue holding everything in place around the neck of the bottle. To counter this, a reinforced neck collar should be applied for extra grip.

PROTOTYPE_30 :: The eureka moment

Today we discovered two RFID tags cancel each other out when one is attached to sticky-backed foil. This makes Prototype_30 completely undetectable to the reader when unopened. 

By folding the other RFID chip inside the foil-backed tag we can create a spring that will propel it from the bottle neck and onto the floor when opened.

The ‘spring loaded’ design does, however, put a lot of force on the glue holding everything in place around the neck of the bottle. To counter this, a reinforced neck collar should be applied for extra grip.

PROTOTYPE_27
'THE FA CUP'
A spring loaded approach enables the bottle to be opened from one side and propelled from the bottle thanks to hinged PVC plastic.
VERDICT
The cumbersome design is too conspicuous and once opened, leaves the over-sized mechanic hanging from the bottle neck. FAIL.

PROTOTYPE_27

'THE FA CUP'

A spring loaded approach enables the bottle to be opened from one side and propelled from the bottle thanks to hinged PVC plastic.

VERDICT

The cumbersome design is too conspicuous and once opened, leaves the over-sized mechanic hanging from the bottle neck. FAIL.

PROTOTYPE_26
THE CYBORG
This is a very crude example but a clumsy design and minimal leverage makes opening tricky and a much more involved manufacture. It also draws much too much attention to itself.

PROTOTYPE_26

THE CYBORG

This is a very crude example but a clumsy design and minimal leverage makes opening tricky and a much more involved manufacture. It also draws much too much attention to itself.

PROTOTYPE_26 IDEA
In order to ensure people open the bottle in a way that the RFID tag is revealed, this design aims to incorporate a bottle opener to the StartCap. A specially made ringpull opener is attached to the tag and requires a specific action with enough power to pull the cap and tag off as one unit. The tag then falls to the floor. As it falls the tag is exposed to the reader.

PROTOTYPE_26 IDEA

In order to ensure people open the bottle in a way that the RFID tag is revealed, this design aims to incorporate a bottle opener to the StartCap. A specially made ringpull opener is attached to the tag and requires a specific action with enough power to pull the cap and tag off as one unit. The tag then falls to the floor. As it falls the tag is exposed to the reader.

PROTOTYPE_25

FAIL: TOO CLUMSY

A good design in principle, but too clumsy to open. It requires significant effort by the user to open in a way that exposes the RFID tag correctly.

Make the design “idiot proof”. I believe our marketing suits would prefer us to use the
more PC term, “user friendly”.
PROTOTYPE_19 : SUCCESS!
The principle here is correct and blocks the tag well when the bottle is closed. Upon opening, the foil lifts away from the tag allowing a signal to be sent to the receiver. LEARNING: This prototype performs well on initial tests, but it’s a bit delicate. We’ll need something more robust.

PROTOTYPE_19 : SUCCESS!

The principle here is correct and blocks the tag well when the bottle is closed. Upon opening, the foil lifts away from the tag allowing a signal to be sent to the receiver.

LEARNING: This prototype performs well on initial tests, but it’s a bit delicate. We’ll need something more robust.
Prototype_22 : DOUBLE FAILFor this prototype we attached an RFID tag to the cap and tucked the rest of the tag away into a foil pocket on the neck of the bottle. LEARNING: Sleek design, but requires an un-natural 2 motions top open and expose the tag. One to open the cap, another to pull the tag from the pocket. We need a solution that will work with normal bottle opening behaviour.
Prototype_22 : DOUBLE FAIL

For this prototype we attached an RFID tag to the cap and tucked the rest of the tag away into a foil pocket on the neck of the bottle.

LEARNING: Sleek design, but requires an un-natural 2 motions top open and expose the tag. One to open the cap, another to pull the tag from the pocket. We need a solution that will work with normal bottle opening behaviour.
PROTOTYPE_18
FAIL

Simply covering the RFID tag in foil and sticking it to the bottleneck is not enough. In this prototype, the neck’s foil remained attached to the cap after it was opened. The tag’s aerial system was never exposed so a signal was never transmitted._FAIL_. LEARNING: Next time we’ll need to ensure the foil will separate on opening and expose the RFID aerial.

PROTOTYPE_18

FAIL
Simply covering the RFID tag in foil and sticking it to the bottleneck is not enough. In this prototype, the neck’s foil remained attached to the cap after it was opened. The tag’s aerial system was never exposed so a signal was never transmitted._FAIL_.

LEARNING: Next time we’ll need to ensure the foil will separate on opening and expose the RFID aerial.