The Red Pitaya company is a test-and-measurement startup in Ljubljana, Slovenia, that was able to raise $250,000 in about one month via Kickstarter. The company is receiving an innovation award from Frost & Sullivan, and it has just announced SCPI support for enhanced Matlab communication.
In an email conversation, Edina Dyachenko, who handles creative and PR operations, described the company, its product, and the recognition it has received.
Rick Nelson: Tell me about your company’s product.
Edina Dyachenko: Red Pitaya is an open-platform instrument combining the functions of several heavy and expensive instruments—such as oscilloscope, signal generator, spectrum analyzer, PID controller, and frequency response analyzer—in just one, palm-sized device.
Rick Nelson: How has the company and the instrument been received?
Edina Dyachenko: Red Pitaya has received tremendous attention in the world of electronics since its successful Kickstarter funding in September 2013. Since its introduction to the market, the Red Pitaya platform has witnessed great demand over the globe.
Rick Nelson: To what do you attribute the product’s success so far?
Edina Dyachenko: Success is mostly the result of a great product combined with the powerful distribution network, which is managed by Electrocomponents plc via its RS Components and Allied Electronics subsidiaries.
Rick Nelson: And you have received industry recognition?
Edina Dyachenko: Yes, Red Pitaya´s success was recognized by Frost & Sullivan, which decided to award Red Pitaya the 2014 Global Electronic Test & Measurement Tools New Product Innovation Award. Frost & Sullivan recognizes that the defined nature of the instruments currently available in the market also presents a key challenge across end-user segments, as they cannot use them for specific applications beyond their basic functions and, more importantly, evolve them as their needs change.
Rick Nelson: How does Red Pitaya help?
Edina Dyachenko: End users are looking for more flexible solutions, and that is where Red Pitaya comes along. Frost & Sullivan evaluated Red Pitaya under these categories: quality/design, positioning, price/performance, and customer ownership experience.
In announcing the award, Frost & Sullivan commented, “Launched in May 2014, Red Pitaya is a breath of fresh air in the test and measurement industry. Frost & Sullivan’s independent analysis of the Test & Measurement market clearly shows that through a combination of high performance and small size at a lower price than competing alternatives, the value proposition of Red Pitaya is boosted by the open source and reconfigurable aspects of the platform. With its strong overall performance, Red Pitaya has earned Frost & Sullivan’s 2014 Global New Product Innovation Award.”
Rick Nelson: Have you received the award already?
Edina Dyachenko: The award presentation ceremony will be taking place on May 14 in London, where Rok Mesar, Red Pitaya´s CEO, will accept the award. (Ed. note: the award had originally been scheduled to be awarded this month at a Frost & Sullivan event in San Diego, but the Red Pitaya team could not attend.)
Rick Nelson: What else is happening with Red Pitaya?
Edina Dyachenko: Frost & Sullivan´s award is not the only thing Red Pitaya is excited about. Red Pitaya has an associated marketplace called Bazaar from which users can download applications for free. Recently, students from Ljubljana University developed an LCR meter application in cooperation with the Red Pitaya team. With increased awareness about the product, and efforts from the company and its partner Electrocomponents plc to put Red Pitaya in the hands of developers, more applications are bound to emerge and become available in Bazaar, increasing the value of Red Pitaya for users over time.
Rick Nelson: Are there are new product features?
Edina Dyachenko: Red Pitaya also announced SCPI protocol support intended for enhancing Matlab-Pitaya communication. Matlab is a common tool for the majority of “technical” people, and Red Pitaya will soon enough provide SCPI interface and simplify their work. Through SCPI commands customers will be able to control their Red Pitaya directly from a Matlab command line. Data transfer will be direct without need for a terminal approach, like in the current solution. Standardized SCPI commands are used to implement Red Pitaya functionalities such as generate, acquire, and others.
Rick Nelson: You mentioned Ljubljana University. Have you worked with any universities in the U.S.?
Edina Dyachenko: So far, we have worked with universities such as Harvard and Brown, and the collaboration was more than positive.