MODERN ACCESS

Latch | Smart Access Lock

MODERN ACCESS

Latch | Smart Access Lock

Latch set out to develop the world’s most advanced smart access product, Latch M, designed for the mortise lock format for commercial buildings.
Replacing keys with your smartphone, smart cards or smart passcodes, Latch is changing the way people seamlessly and securely access their buildings. Beginning with a focus on creating an iconic look for the product, Latch’s next step was to find the right partner to design engineer the product for manufacturing without compromising its unique design.

THE CHALLENGE

This was by no means an easy feat. There were a number of elements that increased the complexity of the task at hand. From a design perspective, the main interface on the front of the lock – the ‘puck’ – was designed to be jet black, with a smooth and curved face, to house all of the electronics. This included the “dead front” capacitive touch interface, the HD camera, wireless communications, and power management. The puck needed to integrate with the lock mechanism to function flawlessly withstanding daily use as well as the natural elements. This would require rigorous material testing and high fidelity prototyping to ensure durability in extreme weather.
Custom developed firmware and software engineering would be required to ensure user experience was implemented to the client’s standard; this would include the wireless operation of the camera and communications.

THE PRODUCT REQUIREMENTS

Requiring a solution that encompassed each of these elements, Latch quickly recognized they needed more than a team that could design engineer their product for production. They needed a development partner who would respect and preserve the unique look and feel of the product whilst executing to perfection on the mechanical and electrical requirements of the design.

As is the PCH Lime Lab way, our team created a meticulous development process plan that ensured that no critical issues were left unchallenged. The plan involved rigorous investigation into the touch interface, touch capacitance, human variables and environmental variables to fully understand the implications.

Testing an EVT sample for immunity to electrostatic discharge

PCH LIME LAB SOLUTION

Latch looked to PCH Lime Lab to identify and solve for risk; we did this by creating iterative prototypes of each component, feature set, and subsystem.
The PCH Lime Lab team conducted water-dunking, thermo-cycling, drop testing and ultrasonic welding trials to ensure durability and reliability.

B1 prototype assembly

THE RESULT

The result was an ADA compliant, award-winning product that preserved the industrial design intent whilst hitting aggressive cost targets insuring the long-term viability of the Latch M in the market for years to come. Delivering a seamless molding that prevents water infiltration, an impact-resistant puck that withstands tampering, and a camera that captures 99% of all target users, the PCH Lime Lab solution brought to life Latch’s vision of creating a strong, simple and stunning product.