VooX, a leading Singaporean spatial computing and technology firm, is building on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to develop digital solutions for the construction and real estate industry. The VooX Smart Inspection solution enables construction and real estate firms to overcome labour constraints, improve efficiency, and increase transparency among stakeholders, and is the first home-grown solution to reach this market since the National Innovation Challenge (NIC) was launched in July 2020.
“VooX is the first technological provider from the NIC cohort to have successfully developed our solution for the Soilbuild’s challenge by the build industry & that is now taking the solution to market. It is a significant milestone for us as hundreds of providers had taken part in the NIC challenges & to be the first to go to market is a good validation of the robustness of our solution,” said Allen Foo, CEO and Founder of VooX.
With the built industry inundated with COVID-19 induced delays, Soilbuild had been looking for a cloud-based intelligent inspection system to improve the overall productivity of its prefabrication production lines in Singapore and Malaysia in line with Singapore’s Construction Industry Transformation Map (ITM).
The construction firm was matched with VooX in July 2020 on the Open Innovation Platform (OIP). Supported by Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority (BCA) and Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), the OIP connected businesses’ needs with a global pool of technology providers to solve long-term sectoral challenges faced by the various industries. Since 2018, OIP has grown to feature more than 11,000 solvers and 200 business challenges, with $7 million in prize monies for prototypes alone.
Kaijie Ng, Director of IMDA’s Open Innovation Platform, said, “I am excited to see VooX build on AWS to scale globally through our Open Innovation Platform. This proves OIP’s value of matching startups with cutting-edge solutions to businesses with meaningful problems to solve. We are happy to see VooX continuing to grow their engineering team and AI capabilities while helping realise our vision of making Singapore a place of innovation.”
VooX reduces inspection time, increases quality assurance
VooX’s Smart Inspection Solution is currently being applied to Soilbuild Construction Group’s (Soilbuild) Integrated Construction and Precast Hub (ICPH) factory project. The system provides 3D digital site inspection and defect management designed to improve workflow, including streamlining QA/QC processes, and reduce delays across the board. VooX also provides training to upskill workers on how to use the system through ‘just-in-time’ training.
The system, equipped with point cloud machine vision capabilities to automatically detect and log visual data and detect dimension defects, has reduced turnaround times between inspections and rectification by 23%. Furthermore, inbuilt artificial intelligence (AI) resulted in more defects detected in a shorter period, resulting in a 56% increase in quality assurance competency across production lines.
“We needed to adopt a solution to overcome border restrictions as our Singapore-based design team needed to correspond with and conduct quality assurance inspections at the ICPH factory in Singapore and our other factories in Malaysia. Additionally, our production supervisors were able to learn and use the solution with great ease and seamlessly relay critical spatial information to our design teams in Singapore,” said Ganessaraj Soocelaraj, CEO of Soilbuild Construction Group Ltd.
VooX’s system uses Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), an object storage service, and AWS Lambda, a serverless, event-driven compute service, to receive and process the large volumes of incoming point cloud data. This allows VooX to analyze the data and deliver actionable results in the shortest possible time. Voox can deploy, manage, and scale the Smart Inspection Solution with Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS), while using AWS Fargate to enhance operations by reducing the infrastructure, deployment and management cost.
“The construction and built environment industries have been under pressure to digitalize their processes and improve the way in which people work. By building on AWS, VooX has been able to provide an innovative service that is designed to improve collaboration and reduce turnaround times while improving quality assurance,” said Stanley Chan, Head of Technology Partners, Asia-Pacific and Japan, AWS.
A glimpse into the future of the construction industry
According to Future of Construction, a forecast co-produced by Oxford Economics, the construction industry is set to lead global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and overtake growth in the manufacturing sector in the decade to 2030. However, construction recovery has been uneven in Singapore, as firms struggle to keep pace with increased demand and delayed construction projects.
It is estimated that for every billion spent on a project, an estimated US$127 million is wasted due to management inefficiencies and delays, and the pandemic has exacerbated this.
VooX was founded on unleashing the potential of data and emerging technology such as AI/ML to frontline sectors such as construction and aims to help boost productivity.
Allen Foo adds, “Industries have begun to dig deeper seeking tech aided solutions. With adoptive and smart technologies, industries not only overcome current industry obstacles but also future proofs businesses.”
Founded in 2016, VooX is a spatial based solution company headquartered in Singapore. With the fast-growing Asia Pacific market and world-leading Fortune 500 companies, the team seeks to deliver productivity solutions for front line teams leveraging the latest technology in AI, spatial computing, Human to Machine Interactivity and IoT across the petrochemical, energy, railway transit, intelligent manufacturing, architecture, construction and engineering, training and education industries.
Soilbuild Construction Group Ltd. is a leading builder with a long and successful track record of constructing a sterling award-winning residential and business space properties portfolio. Since its inception in1976, Soilbuild charts over 40 years of success in offering a full spectrum of real estate services, including Civil Engineering, Design and Build, Construction, Turnkey Construction, Project Management Consultancy, Procurement and Mechanical & Electrical Installation, Precast and Prefabrication.