Lumo Play was founded by Meghan Athavale, Curtis Wachs, Keith Otto and Jocelyne Le Leannec. Meghan and Curtis started a boutique immersive experience company called PO-MO Inc. In 2010 (www.po-mo.com) which still completes R&D projects for museums each year. With the IP developed at PO-MO Inc., they launched Po-motion, an interactive display platform for advertisers, with Keith and Jocelyne in 2011.
Although Po-motion's software solutions were affordable and easy to install, the hardware required to install interactive display games and effects were too expensive and cumbersome for installations outside a retail environment or museum.
In many of these environments—particularly those with children playing—parents would ask if there was any way that Po-motion could work in their homes. Meg and Curtis launched a consumer version of their tools, but it still required a lot of technical know-how and significant hardware to get working. There had to be a better way.
As a mom, Meghan knew all too well how much time her son was spending in front of screens. She understood that games were fun and engaging, but worried about how sedentary he was. She and her team wondered if they could create a new kind of toy—one that combined the fun of video games and virtual worlds with the movement and multiplayer interactivity of the real world.
Looking at the price of components, they realized that it might be possible. With clever engineering, improved components like pico projectors that cost far less and were more reliable, and mobile computing platforms, Meghan, Curtis, and their team thought they might be able to make their vision a reality.
They built a prototype, called it Lumo Play, and received amazing feedback from play-testers and kids. Using revenue from their commercial installations, Lumo Play's original prototype was funded and they began looking for an incubator to help take the hardware development to the next step.
In December 2013, Meghan met Brady Forrest, who ran the Highway 1 hardware incubator . In early 2014 moved to San Francisco to work on Lumo's design for manufacturing. Meghan travelled with Jocelyn Le Leanec to Shenzen to source components and build relationships with suppliers and factories.
Lumo graduated from Highway 1, and the team spent the remainder of the year testing, developing, and promoting their idea, making sure it worked reliably and delighted kids of all ages. Throughout the summer of 2014 to the spring of 2015, Lumo toured events like Maker Faire, the Computer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and South By Southwest in Austin.
In April 2015 Lumo was launched on crowdfunding platform, Indiegogo.com and was fully funded May 9, 2015.