A pushchair which folds into a backpack scoops innovation prize ahead of Gadget Show Live

A pushchair that folds into a backpack in seconds has scooped the top innovation prize ahead of this year’s Gadget Show Live.

The OmniO Rider, created by Cardiff couple Markus and Samantha Warwick, picked up the British Inventors’ Project award for innovation – it can carry up to 25kg, but then folds into a backpack that weighs 5kg in around 30 seconds.

Product director Samantha Warwick said: “This is really the icing on the cake. We’ve just won the Baby Product Association innovation award as well so it’s been a tremendous week. Really, this is great credit to the team we’ve got behind us, so it’s fantastic news. We’re absolutely thrilled.”

The pushchair comes with multi-directional front wheels, which make it easier to manoeuvre, and has also been designed to fit into airplane cabins.

The couple came up with the idea after a day out with their own toddler.

“There was a light bulb moment: one May bank holiday when we were out with our two-and-a-half year old, we decided not to take the stroller with us because we were going to be clambering all over Cardiff Castle,” said Mrs Warwick.

“Well, after four hours, bless him, he decided to lie down on the floor and promptly went to sleep.”

The Warwicks are hoping to bring the OmniO Rider to market in the autumn, and confirmed that they are already using crowd-funding site IndieGogo to take pre-orders. As winners of the award, they will receive £1,000 as well as a stand at next year’s Gadget Show Live to show off their product to the public more widely.

The annual live show in Birmingham brings together a host of big-name gadget makers, including Dyson and Intel, but now also dedicates space to British start-ups with the British Inventors’ Project, which is in its second year.

Gadget Show presenter Jason Bradbury, who arrived at the event at the NEC in Birmingham in his own Delorean from the Back to the Future series, said of the project: “It’s really exciting. We see inventors from around the UK and then whittle them down. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Bradbury added that he was keen to see the technology that would set the trend for the coming year.

“2015 Gadget Show Live is interesting because you can observe the tech trends year-on-year. This year there’s a big focus on wearables – health and fitness wearables – that I don’t remember seeing last year.”

“Drones are very big thing this year too,” he added.

Sally Bent, Gadget Show Live event director, said: “As a nation, the UK’s design heritage is one to be proud of and we wanted to showcase British talent as well as provide a platform for it to flourish and develop further.”

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