Impinj, Inc.: Leveraging Platform That Connects the Physical & Digital Worlds


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Effortlessly donning the hat of a businessman, engineer, and an innovator-in-chief, Dr. Chris Diorio is a multi-dimensional personality, Founder, CEO  & Vice Chairman of Impinj, Inc. Impinj (NASDAQ: PI) is a leading provider of RAIN RFID solutions. It wirelessly connects billions of everyday items such as apparel, medical supplies, and automobile parts to the consumer and business applications such as inventory management, patient safety, and asset tracking.

So far, Impinj has enabled over 25 billion items to be connected to the internet, and further plans to continue on improving and expanding their platform. With a far-sighted visionary founder, the company is driving towards their vision of digital life for trillions of everyday items and extending the reach of the internet by a factor of 1,000. The leading IoT service provider offers business applications with information about an item’s identity, location, or authenticity to help companies improve efficiencies, increase sales, and delight customers. It is, undoubtedly a front running company with over 25 billion items connected, trusted partner in 60 countries and more than 200 patents issued.

An Erudite Professor & Perceptive Entrepreneur

Passionate about technology, Dr. Chris Diorio is a leading pioneer of RAIN RFID. He is an Affiliate Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Washington, and a Director of the RAIN RFID Alliance.

Impinj began while Chris was teaching at the University of Washington, where his research led him to develop a self-adaptive silicon chip that could change and react to its environment after its fabrication. This meant that chips could deliver dynamic information and responses in real-time; a powerful asset for those operating at the dawn of the digital world. Chris thought that these cheap, tiny chips could be used to “tag” any physical item and connect it to the internet for unprecedented, unparalleled visibility into the product movement. Recognizing the potential of these tiny chips to irrevocably change business operations, Chris founded Impinj in 2000.

Chris has more than 150 issued patents, 69 scholarly publications, and has received numerous awards, including EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Pacific Northwest, EE Times/EDN Innovator of the Year, AIM Global Ted Williams Award, RFID Journal Special Achievement Award, and the IEEE Paul Rappaport Award. He has also received Packard, Sloan, Presidential, and ONR fellowships. Chris earned his Ph.D. from Caltech and has over 30 years’ experience in computer and radio engineering.

Wide Range of Capitalizing Technology

The technology driven company recognizes that RAIN is one of many item-to-cloud connectivity technologies. Yet, firmly believes that RAIN’s capabilities—unique identifiers, wireless and battery-free, low cost, long range, 1,000 reads per second, essentially unlimited life, and cryptographic authentication—are unmatched by any other technology, and enable RAIN to coexist with those other technologies. By providing the potential to connect almost any physical item to the internet, the opportunities and applications for RAIN RFID are endless.

Trivia About Current Projects

Presently, Impinj is investing in their integrated platform, with a focus on supporting the needs of the retail, logistics, and healthcare industries, correspondingly supporting partners who are driving their platform’s adoption in other verticals such as airlines, laundry, and automotive. In the coming years, the technology solutions provider company plans on linking physical items with cloud-based twins that include the item’s history, ownership, and available services. Additionally, the company is working on operating system that will include some of the services, including those essential for developers to link business and people with items.

Impinj Elite Team

The Impinj management team brings together pioneering minds in RAIN RFID and enterprise solutions to make digital life for everyday items a reality. The overall team members are innovative, passionate, curious, and constantly pushing ideas forward. The company celebrates the employees’ unique talents and personalities who drive Impinj’s culture forward to a place that is inspiring, collaborative, hard-working, and fun! While hiring, Chris along with the management looks for people who are respectful, objective, and self-critical, as well as full of spirit, and willing to work as a team. Employees are encouraged to lead by an example, collaborate, learn from each other, and approach challenges with an open mind.

Prospective Challenges

As businesses have increasingly recognized the potential of RAIN RFID products to change their operations, it has become clear that mass adoption requires universal RAIN RFID standards. Chris has helped to develop the RAIN RFID, which has given the industry a launching point for mass commercial adoption, and advanced its technological capabilities for continued future gains. The technology service provider envisions to further drive the adoption of this standard.

Power Packed Success Mantras

Dr. Chris Diorio advises the young generation to exercise patience. As, the path forward is likely to have more twists and turns than one can ever expect, Chris shares following three leadership tips.

  • Lead by an example – It is the little things one does that people notice.
  • Empower people – It is important to tell people where to go, not how to get there.
  • Always listen – One should be humble enough to listen to others and their opinions.

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