Intelligent water: New M Phyn joint venture taps UW tech expertise with Seattle R&D lab

The Wemo Water sensor technology, which was announced but never released commercially, will form the basis for the new Phyn joint venture. (Credit: Belkin.) A new $40 million joint venture called Phyn, announced this week by electronics maker Belkin International and plumbing supplier Uponor Corp., will operate a research and development lab in Seattle, working in partnership with University of Washington engineers to bring intelligent water technologies to market.The lab was originally formed through Belkin’s 2010 acquisition of clean energy startup Zensi, which was led by UW professor Shwetak Patel, the serial entrepreneur and MacArthur Genius Award winner who continues to serve as Belkin’s chief scientist. Known previously as Wemo Labs, the group developed a device called Wemo Water, a sensor system installed under a kitchen sink that uses machine learning to monitor and analyze household water usage down to specific…


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