SOMI-1 was designed to be a reliable motion sensor platform for musical applications via MIDI. It consists of up to 6 motion sensor wearables, a receiver hub with UI/IO elements and an (optional) mobile app (iOS / Android) providing ready-to-use sound scapes for consumers without technical pre knowledge in electronic musical instruments. The motion sensors can be attached to different body parts or any other moving object using the provided wristbands or clothing clips. Unprecedented performance and connectivity is achieved by using a dedicated receiver hardware.
In comparison to other MIDI controllers from the past using motion sensors, SOMI-1 follows a top down approach. Thus, it focuses not only on a specific body part or rather a specific gesture, but the whole body to be used as a controller by using several motion sensors simultaneously. Furthermore, each motion sensor offers 7 independent movement parameters, which can be mapped to specific MIDI messages, such as Note On/Off, Control Change (optional 14 bit) and Pitch Bend. Additionally, the sensor data is post-processed on the receiver hub allowing scaling, smoothing, inversion, etc. of each parameter independently. This offers high flexibility to integrate SOMI-1 in any live or studio setup and allows artists to use SOMI-1 with any MIDI compatible hardware or software. The movement parameters are computed using state-of-the-art sensor fusion algorithms based on accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer. Furthermore, by using a custom transmission protocol based on Bluetooth® 5 between the motion sensor wearables and the receiver hub, a latency under 10 milliseconds is guaranteed independent of the end device. Additionally distances of up to 50 meters are possible as well as a high number of sensors, which can be used simultaneously.