Crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter – or perhaps more accurately, the creators that receive funding from backers – are often criticized for their inability to get promised products to market on time (or at all). In fairness, navigating the waters of manufacturing isn’t exactly smooth sailing, especially if you have zero experience in the industry.
It’s this area of the process that Kickstarter’s latest initiative looks to address.
Kickstarter has partnered with electronic components distributor Avnet and Dragon Innovation, a firm that has provided expertise to hundreds of companies with regard to project management, manufacturing and related tasks, to create an initiative called Hardware Studio.
The idea is to help creators plan ahead for manufacturing before they even launch on the crowdfunding platform and reduce the overall risk associated with crowdfunding from a backer’s perspective. Specifically, Kickstarter says creators will have access to insights and expertise to help take their idea from prototype to production complete with a smart manufacturing plan.
Two key layers of Hardware Studio – a collection of tools and tutorials that’ll be available for free to the community and Hardware Studio Connection, described as a service to prepare those working on complex projects – will launch this September.
Although not specified, the latter portion sounds as if it’ll come at a cost to creators. Not everyone will be willing to pay for the help but the simple fact that it’s on offer will no doubt make the entire process easier for others.