Masterful folded artwork

Small as a credit card; ingenious technology: Platypus, the foldable reading glasses

Anyone who gets to know Hans Gerber notices at once: you are sitting opposite an entrepreneur through and through – a visionary and a doer. Sparkling with ideas, passionate about intelligent solutions and always on the lookout for innovations. As the owner of renowned Diamond SA, which has its headquarters on Lake Maggiore, he actually has enough to do managing a world market leader in fibre optic technology. However as a trained precision mechanic, he also likes to develop other ground-breaking ideas, such as reading glasses that can be folded up to the size of a credit card. On seeing a duck-billed platypus on a trip to Australia, he soon found a name for his little invention: Platypus.

Does this sound familiar? You take a seat in the restaurant and are given the menu, but unfortunately the small print doesn't really want to come into focus even with your arm outstretched. No problem if you had your reading glasses to hand, but they’re at home between your newspaper and PC. This is where Platypus comes into its own. The elegant frameless reading glasses can be easily removed from their slim case, which measures 55 x 87 millimetres, the same size as a business card or credit card and, at just 8 millimetres high, fits comfortably into any jacket pocket. One thing you can be sure of: merely opening the case draws curious glances, and when you then unfold them, it’s almost an act of celebration. Under the astonished eyes of your companion, the temples find their position and the horizontally angled shape becomes a finished masterpiece with a few hand movements and turns. Undeniably a cool statement and an exclusive eye-catcher. As befits a qualified precision mechanic, Gerber lets you believe this is a simple gadget. It goes without saying, however, that the design conceals the most sophisticated technology and precision mechanics, the components are of the highest quality and the design is of the finest craftsmanship with a sophistication that is second to none. After use, the glasses can be stowed away again just as quickly. Incidentally, the case itself is far more than just an efficient and elegantly designed box – a kind of porthole is fitted exactly where one of the glasses lies inside. This allows the closed case to be used as a magnifying glass. Ingenious!

Diamond SA’s experience naturally flowed into the development of the Platypus glasses, which are manufactured at all stages in the company’s own manufactory at its headquarters. Here, too, the focus is on high-precision fine machining of very hard materials and complex filigree techniques. The glasses frame made of rust-free and nickel-free stainless steel is suitable for allergy sufferers and offers pleasant wearing comfort; the premium lenses from Essilor® guarantee a clear view at your personal vision acuity – with high scratch resistance, UV protection and optional blue light filter for screen work or mobile devices. Three different glass shapes and three elegant colours make it easy to find your perfect model – they can be tried on virtually in the Platypus online shop or ordered for trial wearing in real life. To go with them: the matching aluminium case (each hand-milled from one piece), which can be personalised with an individual engraving, to transport the 12 gram lightweight glasses stylishly, protected and always to hand. There is a 10-year spare parts warranty for the glasses, a clear indication of reliable longevity. Top service is also included: revisions for care or repair are free of charge within two years. In brief: Platypus is exclusive, innovative and fascinatingly functional. A true masterpiece of folded art.

The fine machining of ultra-hard materials like ruby, sapphire, carbide and diamonds was the cornerstone of Diamond SA in Losone, Switzerland, founded in 1958. The Ticino-based company quickly grew to become a specialist in pick-up needles for record players until 1979, when the first CD player heralded a new era. Diamond responded and adapted to the changing markets by focusing on the exciting, high-growth area of fibre optics. With success: today, Diamond SA is the world’s leading supplier of high-precision, fibre optic components and connector solutions for international companies in the telecommunications, industrial, photonics, medical, military and space sectors. Hans Gerber joined Diamond SA in 1975 as Technical Director and has been Managing Director since 1983. In 1987, he took over Diamond SA as part of a management buy-out.

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