If you measure a Kickstarter project’s worth by how much money it raises from backers, Chicago-based designer Scott Wilson’s TikTok and LunaTik wristbands easily qualify as a success story. But if you measure it by who comes sniffing around afterward wanting to sell your product, these wristbands--which turn an iPod Nano into a wristwatch--have scored something of a coup.
Wilson, unable to sell his idea for a Nano wristband to a manufacturer, put his product up on Kickstarter hoping to draw investment. In just one month 13,500 investors had thrown $1 million at the idea, setting a funding record for the site and sending the TikTok and LunaTik into mass production. But the high point for Wilson came when Apple--the same Apple that invented the iPod and designs the sleekest technology packaging on the planet--came asking to sell the wristbands in its stores.
What else did we learn from this Kickstarter experiment? For one, people are still willing to pay up for quality. Friends and contacts advised Wilson to keep it in the $35 range, but Wilson sold twice as many of the LunaTiks ($80)--which come with a nice, sturdy aluminum case--than the plastic TikToks ($40). And, interestingly, when he surveyed his backers 76% said they bought their Nanos because of how cool the wristband was, rather than the other way around. Food for thought for the inventors among us.
As for the wristbands, LunaTik will still sell you one at its website, but you can also now find them at the Apple store.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.