Taoke (Business)

Dustin Jefferson Onghanseng and uHoo

Entering the innovation industry, Dustin Jefferson Onghanseng introduces the world’s most advanced air quality monitor, uHoo, to the mass market… but how did he start out?

Born and raised in the Philippines, Onghanseng moved to Singapore for college and graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in computing, major in eCommerce, minor in business, minor in Technopreneurship at the National University of Singapore. He started out as an analyst at BDO Raffles Consultants. Later, he joined Deloitte and rose the ranks around four years later as a senior innovation consultant focused on healthcare. He pursued his MBA at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology from 2013 to 2015. 

During this time, he built uHoo from the ground up and spent four years of research and development (while dropping classes in the process). uHoo was launched in 2018. Today, the product is available in more than 30 countries. 

Business is personal

Onghanseng suffers from a respiratory condition, often having bouts of allergies and asthma attacks during his time at school. Thus, he created uHoo with the goal of maintaining clean air and good respiratory health. He stated: “We believe clean air is a fundamental human right. Our mission is to make clean, breathable air accessible to all.”

Clean air is not as accessible as one might expect. In fact, over 90% of humans are breathing dangerous levels of pollutants that can increase the chances of having strokes, heart attacks, and lung cancer. 7 million people die from polluted air every year. uHoo is a simple yet comprehensive solution to recognizing and monitoring the air quality in your home and workplace. As uHoo’s tagline goes: see the air you breathe. 

Onghanseng explained: “uHoo is an environmental data platform that helps homes and enterprises (public and private) improve health and well-being, decarbonize and enhance their sustainability and ESG performance. Our technology is the most comprehensive and highest performing globally and we are able to help our enterprise clients scale their sustainability initiatives. We also provide exceptional service to all our enterprise clients.”

uHoo is a brand of air quality monitors that are designed to monitor and track the quality of the air in your home or office. These devices use a variety of sensors to measure factors such as temperature, humidity, air pressure, carbon dioxide (CO2) levels, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10), and more. 

The uHoo air monitor connects to your Wi-Fi network and can be accessed through a smartphone app, allowing you to see real-time data on the air quality in your home and receive notifications if any readings exceed certain thresholds. Having uHoo in your space enables you to act when said readings exceed thresholds, thereby preventing molds, CO-induced fatigue, sudden migraine, eyes and nose irritation, allergy attacks, and more.

For example, when you fire up the stove and cook, nitrogen dioxide or NO2 heightens especially when your kitchen is poorly ventilated. NO2 irritates the airways; long-term exposure to NO2 can cause chronic respiratory problems such as wheezing, coughing, and reduced lung function, and even cardiovascular diseases.

It’s undoubtedly challenging to bring such technology to the global market. Onghanseng lamented: “Global supply chain issues resulted in higher costs and shortage of materials to produce our product. [But] we overcame them by negotiating with our manufacturing partner and hedging the supply of electronic components globally.” There is also the challenge of persuading enterprises to invest in their employees’ health and well-being by monitoring air quality through uHoo.

Indeed, Onghanseng is one of the most creative and brilliant innovators in the community. His advice to other business owners? “Breakthroughs are on the other side of your comfort zone. Just do it.”

To learn more about what uHoo can do for your health, visit their official website

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