Innovation on Kickstarter: The 10 Top-Funded Tech Ideas of 2014
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creative projects, and many of the most-successful crowdfunding campaigns have involved board games like the Bones figurines that Reaper Miniatures created for its Dark Heaven line, card games like Exploding Kittens, public-minded programs like Reading Rainbow, and films like the Veronica Mars movie project.
Nevertheless, Gallagher and Dimatos said that Kickstarter experienced its own version of a “Netscape moment” in 2010, when a crowdfunding campaign for the Glif, a gadget that enabled people to attach their iPhone to a standard camera tripod, raised over $50,000 in its first two days of fundraising. The project set out to raise $10,000, and ultimately raised $137,417.
Two years later, the crowdfunding campaign for the Pebble smartwatch proved to be an even bigger moment. After setting a fundraising goal of $100,000 on Kickstarter, Palo Alto, CA-based Pebble Technology raised nearly $10.3 million. The Pebble also raised expectations about the kind of impact a crowdfunding campaign could have on innovation.
“Before Pebble, people didn’t know they wanted a smartwatch,” said Dimatos. “After Pebble, people wanted to know, ‘Where is my jet-pack future?’”
It’s hard to predict just what the next jet-pack might be, but some technology trends stand out, including video games, 3D printers, drones, innovations in food and drink products, and Oculus-like virtual reality interfaces for entertainment. Here’s our nationwide list of the top-funded projects of 2014 on Kickstarter:
1) Coolest Cooler, with a goal of $50,000, raised $13.28 million from 62,642 backers in August. Invented by Ryan Grepper of Portland, OR, the 60-quart cooler includes a blender, a waterproof Bluetooth speaker, USB charger, cutting board and other features for a portable party.
2) PonoMusic player, with a goal of $800,000, raised $6.2 million from 18,220 backers in April. Based in San Francisco and driven by frontman Neil Young, PonoMusic set out to create a system for audiophiles that would play at the same quality level as the original recording. The Pono Player, with a triangular shape like a Toblerone chocolate bar, is a portable music player designed to play high-resolution music files that use up to 20 times more data than MP3 files.
3) The Micro 3D Printer, with a goal of $50,000, raised $3.4 million from 11,855 backers in May. Bethesda, MD-based M3D set out to create an affordable and consumer-friendly 3D printer that can be … Next Page »
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