The Pebble Watch, designed by Eric Migicovsky, is a watch that, quite simply, can display messages from a user’s smartphone. Pebble connects to iPhone and Android smartphones using Bluetooth, is customizable, has downloadable watchfaces and boasts internet-connected apps. The watch alerts wearers with silent vibrations to incoming calls, emails and messages.
Migicovsky initially took the Pebble project through the Y Combinator technology incubator program, and managed to raise some funds that way, though not enough to take the business to the next level.
That’s when Migicovsky turned to Kickstarter, launching a campaign for Pebble on April 11, 2012, with an initial fundraising target of $100,000.
The campaign promised that backers spending $115 would receive a Pebble watch when they became available ($99 for the first 200). With the full retail price of the Pebble set at $150, this was a significant discount.
Just two hours after going live, the project had met its $100,000 goal and within six days of being on Kickstarter, the project had become the platform’s most funded project ever, raising over $4.7 million with 30 days left of the campaign.
So hot was the Pebble watch on Kickstarter, that the team had to announce on May 10th that they would be limiting the number of pre-orders. On May 18, 2012, funding closed with $10,266,844 pledged by 68,928 people.
The watch’s tech specs include a 1.26-inch 144 × 168 pixel monochrome e-paper display with backlight, a vibrating motor and a three-axis accelerometer. The device uses Bluetooth 4.0 to pair with iPhones or Android devices, and the battery on the watch can last seven days before needing a full recharge. The watch is also water resistant and boasts GPS.
Pebble’s SDK is freely available to developers who want to build apps for it.
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As far as I'm concerned kickstarter is for the little guy. It's platforms like this that help those who would have never been heard get their chance to show their talents and shine.
chad with http://www.landscapelightingworld.com
You're right though, David, that I think Kickstarter projects need to give better time commitments. Other than that... it's awesome. I want almost everything on this list! In my opinion http://www.movingangels.com should be in the new list.
Good thing Formlabs raised $2,945,885.
They will likely spend $2,900,000 of it on lawyers defending their patent infringement allegation.
Sad that dinosaurs (I'm looking at you RIAA) need the courts to keep a business going that has not evolved to the market environment, or where it's simply appropriate to throw in the towel.
3D printers are now under $1000. A good chunk of the 3D printer market got obliterated by this, and an entirely new segment got created - are the dinos making sub-$1000 printers to keep market share, brand, or play in the newly emerging segment? Nope - send in the lawyers and defend your $20,000 price tag.
Failure to adapt to the environment = extinction.
And lawyers will only hasten your demise when the money could have been spent on engineering R&D.
Kickstarter is a very interesting way to fund small startups! I am wondering how the site funding and money transfer details work. Does Kickstarter get a cut of the overall funds raised or is there a set fee structure? It sounds like a great way to get ideas funded, I may consider a few projects myself.
You'll be the envy of everyone when you get your Pebble! I am already plotting about how to win it off you in a game of poker or something! :) You're right though, David, that I think Kickstarter projects need to give better time commitments. Other than that... it's awesome. I want almost everything on this list!
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.