Today we talked with the founders of Inka Robotics, entrepreneurs from Israel, who created the first tattooing robot.
Tell me please a couple of words about your company. What do you do?
We are building an autonomous tattooing robot controlled by computer vision. We have already produced a working technology demonstrator.
The robot we've developed is capable of tattooing designs that a human hand cannot (it is also faster and more accurate than a human being). Moreover, this robot is capable of creating perfect tattoo reproductions - famous artists can have their designs tattooed all over the world. From the client point of view - potential clients who won't have the ability to reach their favorite artists - could get those incredible tattoos in their local area.
How did you start building tattoo robots and why?
Lihai, a friend and a co-founder came up with the idea about 2 years ago. We made a survey and found that over 50% of tattooed clients were excited about the prospect of having a robot tattoo them.
Since then it's become our passion to create something that'll be valuable for the artists and the clients.
Tell me please about your current products. Do people really can make tattoo right now with your equipment?
We currently have a working prototype. We've tattooed a lot of pig skin, and our CTO will be the first to receive a real tattoo from it (very soon!)
We have a waiting list of people who want tattoos from the prototype - anyone can register here.
How do you think: will people be ready to use a robot instead of a tattoo artist, who could support and talk to clients during tattooing?
Like I said - there is already a lot of excitement about this robot, a long waiting list, and a lot of buzz.
The robot will be placed in tattoo shops after we finish touch ups (turn the prototype into a full product). It'll have an operator next to it with a full tattooing background. The operator will support and advice the customer. Besides - the client will have a stop button, which he/she can press at any time to stop the process, go for a break, and return to the robot to continue the tattoo.
Did you make a lot of mistakes during building your first robot? Who was the first model? How many modernizations have you made since building your first system?
The prototype we built underwent some changes for better accuracy, skin penetration, body movement tracking, speed and so forth.
We've partnered with a famous studio "Ink Me Baby" in Tel-Aviv, whose artists are helping us and advising us along the road. We've also gotten a lot of help from numerous tattoo artists who we met along this journey.
It would be great, if you could tell me about your future plans about tattoo production.
The first robot will be placed at the studio "Ink Me Baby". This will happen within a year from now. Afterwords, we'll penetrate foreign markets.
What do you think about the future of tattoos in general? What will happen to the tattoo industry?
Just as bamboo tattooing is still in style after the tattooing machine came, so would old-school tattooing still be in style after this robot will come. We're just the next technological leap in the industry.
If you want to tell me something you would like to share with people, you can freely tell.
To all the tattoo artists out there that want their tattoos reproduced around the world, please don't hesitate to contact us.
To all the clients - stay tuned on our Facebook page.