#2015RECAP Top 10 Kickstarter Hardware projects innovated with Seeed

The booming of open source hardware, 3D printing, crowd-funding and global logistics creates an evolutionary easy platform to hardware innovators. Diversified demands cannot be fully satisfied by mass production.

Seeed, apart from providing open source electronics, helps productize 1 to 10k pcs (picture below) with in-house engineering, supply chain management and agile manufacture forces to grow inspirations into differentiating product. More specifically, we offer Fusion Service for fast prototyping and Propagate Service for small scale production, ranging from co-design,design for manufacture, testing development, quality control, agile manufacture, sales and distribution to fulfillment and drop shipping.


2015 has been a remarkable year to accelerate our manufacture service for maker community.


Below are 10 highlighted crowd-funding projects we have cooperated in 2015 to unleash their inner inventor and allow them to focus more on product design and tech support.



Smart Strap for Pebble Time – Awesome Smartwatch, No Compromises

78,471 backers pledged $20,338,986 to help bring Pebble Time to life. Rephone Strap kit for Pebble is part of Pebble’s $1 million Smart Strap project. 

In March, Pebble launched an open hardware accessory platform about Smartstrap for Pebble, to encourge the development and commercialization of projects for Pebble devices in their Kickstarter campaign. Seeed is proud to be one of their partners. “We turned to SeeedStudio for their ability to very quickly understand the needs of hackers . The Xadow modules offer a wide variety of sensors and is the perfect match for Pebble Time new smartstrap connector”,  Pebble CEO Eric Migicovsky said.

Seeed Studio offers strap-sized and Arduino-compatible xadow modules, including NFC readers, GPS module and Xadow duino. The upcoming Xadow adapter for Pebble Time will make prototyping new smartstraps very simple and affordable. Nosk, product manager of Xadow wearble platform, opened the development processes and invited the community to contribute their ideas. The Rephone Strap Kit will be out in 15th, Jan. Stay tuned!



Arduboy : Card Sized Gaming

7,221 backers, $433,038 pledge, and  first batch of 10k kits to help bring this project to life

Arduboy is a game system the size of a credit card. An open source development platform with a free library of user submitted content including dozens of games! Compatible with Arduino! Learn to program and make your own games!
The story behind is that Kevin, founder of Arduboy, quit his job making wind turbines after prototyping video went viral. He came to China to get Arduboy incubated in HAX, and activated manufacture with Seeed after an overwhelming success on Kickstarter with 433k pledge. And the maker becomes entrepreneur. We started working with Kevinsince the initial prototypes then 300 pcs developer kits and now the 10000 pcs Kickstarter kits. We have been through many processes together including offering DFM suggestions, sourcing replacement components, improving mechanical and electronic design, managing supply chain, promoting Arduboy to all available channels. We are working very closely now to deliver the product before Feb.


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Strawbees,dream BIG, build BIGGER!

1,743 backers, $91,660 pledge and a new batch of 12.5k kits to keep this project to life

Strawbees is a construction kit based on one simple unit that lets you connect straws to each other. You stick a Strawbee into the ends of a standard quarter inch (6mm) straw to make struts and then connect them with another Strawbee. It’s a wonderful system for trial and error construction and allows you to do a lot of things impossible with other systems.
Even though we are not an expert in plastic, our mechanical engineer cleared all of the key points for the Strawbees to validate our production capacity at the first place. Eventually we improved the design file for manufacture and made the injection molding for the new version. Now you can find the new logo on strawbees as we replaced a more robust material for injection molding.


photo-original (4)Quirkbot:Make your own robots with drinking straws!

670 backers, $72,190 pledge, and first batch of 1.5k kits to help bring this project to life

Here comes an extended version of Strawbee with open source electronics.  Quirkbot is a little character you can program and construct into different shapes and forms. Connect strawbees, motors, LEDs and sensors to make your own creatures! It’s a fun and easy way into the inspiring world of physical programming, electronics and mechanics for kids, grown-ups and educators.
Actually we cooperated with Quirkbot team earlier than Strawbees team. When Mr. Krostofer Hagbard came to China to exhibit the project, we have to say it is really attractive. Our cooperation started from the sourcing and prototypes. At the moment, we just finished the first production batch of 1500 Quirkbot Kits in time and handle drop shipping of 600 kits to backers around the world.




The Smart Citizen Kit: Crowdsourced Environmental Monitoring

517 backers,  $68,000 pledge, and accumulated 500 kits to help keep this project to life

Smart Citizen is a platform to generate participatory processes of people in the cities. Connecting data, people and knowledge, the objective of the platform is to serve as a node for building productive and open indicators, and distributed tools, and thereafter the collective construction of the city for its own inhabitants. The Smart Citizen platform is a full set of of tools waiting from you to start using them: register to the platform, check the API, download the Android app, get a Kit or contribute to the open-source project.
They cooperated with us for pcb design and pcba manufacturing for the first and second version of product.


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The Nomad CNC Mill

363 backers, $513,665 pledge, and  first batch of 750 units to help bring this project to life

Carbide 3D makes the Nomad 883, a fully-enclosed, ready-to-run CNC machine that’s at home in any environment. The Nomad 883 ships with MeshCAM to turn your 3D part into something a CNC mill can work with, and Carbide Motion to control the Nomad 883. Things like feed rates, speeds, depths of cut, etc are handled automatically to reduce the learning curve associated with CNC machining. You’ll have no trouble cutting hardwoods, acrylic, Delrin, ABS, Renshape, machinable wax, even brass and aluminum.
It was a pleasure to work with clients like Carbide team. Partially because these guys are super pro in fabrication, they are good enough to go straight for small batch manufacture very smoothly without sample and save the lead time for their awaited Kickstarter backers.



ArduSat,Your Arduino Experiment in Space
676 backers, $106,330 pledge, and  first batch of 150 kits to help keep this project to life

ArduSat is a miniature cubic satellite, measuring 10 cm along each edge and weighing about 1 kg. Onboard it will have a suite of 25+ sensors, including three cameras, a Geiger counter, spectrometer, magnetometer and more. The sensors are connected to a bank of user-programmable Arduino processors, which run your application or experiment, gathering data from the space environment.The Arduinos can also read status data from the satellite (like orbit position, per-system power usage, board temperature, etc.), so you can also run tests on the satellite itself.
We completed manufacture process in one month, 1 week in our US branch and the rest in our Shenzhen HQ. Despite of short lead time,  we managed to complete the PCB assembly with BGA components and avoid risk in rework/repair procedures.


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GoPiGo: a complete robot kit for the Raspberry Pi

380 backers, $56,546 pledge, and accumulated 10k+ kits to help bring this project to life

GoPiGo is a robot car! It comes with everything you need to get your Raspberry Pi rolling, including a robot body, motors, controls, and a robust power supply. With so many programming languages and USB accesories available for the Pi, you can turn your GoPiGo into anything from a WiFi controlled robot for exploring the scary spaces behind the couch to an autonomous rocket launching office enforcer. With the Raspberry Pi acting as the brains of the robot, the possibilities are infinite.
We suggest alternative components to optimize the design for manufacture process, modify the package design and bring the cost down of 10%.


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Primo Toys: Teaching programming logic to children age 4 to 7
651 backers, £56,666 pledge, and first batch of 750 kits to help keep this project to life

Primo Toys is a playful physical programming interface that teaches children programming logic without the need for literacy. Their mission is to inspire children to explore the digital world around them. They make toys that are loved by children and trusted by parents and educators. Learning time should be playtime too.
We support this project to improve the electronic design, DFM and small batch production run for 1st and 2nd version, especially in modification of PCBA design for steady output current.


01735a717e1d93d1e80cb606c7dc9e85_originalBOCCO: the family robot that brings your loved ones closer
136 backers, $27,037 pledge , and  first batch of 5k units to help bring this project to life

BOCCO is a wi-fi connected interact robot designed by a Tokyo-based startup Yukai Engineering. BOCCO keeps you connected to your loved ones while you are away from home. Send a voice message from the BOCCO app, and he’ll play it back at home. Speak into BOCCO, and he’ll send a message to other family members’ smartphones. You can also send a text message from the app which BOCCO will read out loud.
Seeed is proud to work with the team for development of the China production version since last year We expect the mass production of the electronic parts to be completed in 2016 first half.


Last but not least, we would like invite you to vote for a poll of Your Interested Manufacture Topics. Leave us a comment if you have other recommendation. We will give away a coupon of 100USD for PCB service to one of our lucky voters and commentators:)  We accept multiple choices and it is due on 18th, Jan in one week. Your preferences and opinions are valuable for content curation in 2016. Please take this chance to let us know about you.

 [polldaddy poll=9262462]


See Also Seeed Studio page on Kickstarter for 42 partnering projects since 2010
See Also Top 10 open source hardware we productize at Seeed in 2014 

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January 2016