Quirky is a clever new community portal based around the idea of product development. Submit an idea, other members of the community vote on it and the winner product gets made in a factory and everything. The site promises to deliver a new product every few days, which is a pretty ambitious goal. The catch? You’ve got to hand over $99.00 to get your product idea on the board. Everything else is free.
I particularly like the fact that influencers (people who back a particular product) can earn money if their choice wins and goes to market. It’s also neat that intellectual property stays with the product team, rather than the service, so you can run off and make your item elsewhere if you want. There’s even a pre-sales shop where enthusiasts can put their name down for the item in question before it comes off the conveyor. This is a v cool service and it’s from the same 22 year old guy that started Mophie and Kluster. Which makes it double cool.
Of course it’s not the only such service out there, but all of the major competitors seem to have given up on public crowdsourced development and gone enterprise. CambrianHouse.com has morphed into Chaordix, microPledge.com also appears to be corporate focused now, and Redesignme.com is blatently large business oriented. Interesting. Anyhoo, we wish the newcomer every success.
Your $99 investment takes you all the way to professionally manufactured product, on the shelves, ready to earn you a hell of a lot more. Worst case? Those 99 bucks buy you detailed analytics of who liked and didn’t like your idea. Afterall, just because you may not have won the race this week doesn’t mean your idea wasn’t viable. Maybe you’ll decide to go it on your own, and hey, now you’ll have valuable research to help you go ahead and make that happen.