Kiwi company Swiftpoint’s computer mouse outruns Sony, Philips, Samsung to win CES award, Kickstarter campaign soars after award
Swiftpoint’s Kickstarter funding for its GT computer mouse has been a runaway success with 943 backers found in little over a week.
Swiftpoint Ltd put its product up for pre-order on Kickstarter on Nov 12 to coincide with the announcement that the company has won a 2015 CES Best Of Innovation Award, in computer peripherals, which honours outstanding design and engineering in technology products for consumers- an award won by Samsung last year.
CEO Grant Odgers says timing it with the announcement provided validation and made the product more credible for its launch on Kickstarter.
CEO Grant Odgers: “We spent a lot of time looking for ways to explain the unique product benefits quickly…”
The page states the company is launching the product on Kickstarter to “support a community of people who love great ideas” as the Swiftpoint team is very active within the Kickstarter community and has collectively backed 20 other projects.
Swiftpoint offers pledgers the opportunity to be the first in the world to receive its new product and a discount against the retail price when the product is made available to the market in early December.
The money pledged is going towards the company’s project reserves for buying components and costs to be paid to its manufacturing partner up front.
GT Mouse in action
The cheapest prize tier to pre-order a mouse, at $87, has sold out and the campaign has 17 days to go.
Odgers says getting the main story and the project video right were key factors in the success of their Kickstarter campaign.
“We spent a lot of time looking for ways to explain the unique product benefits quickly but without losing the necessary level of detail.”
He says other contributors to the success include reaching out to the company’s customer base from the previous mouse model and responding to all comments posted publicly and messages sent privately.
The idea for a better mouse product was first formed in 2005, after Odgers became annoyed with the limited functionality of his laptop touch pad.
The GT mouse is a new model that inherits a lot of features from the SM300 model that made its debut in 2010 and weighs a petite 23 grams, measuring 5.6cm by 4.3cm.
Fitts’ Law (an industry standard used as a test for pointing device’s efficiency) was used on the SM300 and results showed it was 30 to 40% faster than a touch pad.
However, Odgers says the new model is a “huge step forward” from the SM300, as it has a redesigned lens and optics system that allows for intuitive touch gestures across multiple devices.
This is done using technology that is patented by Swiftpoint. Odgers describes the technology as having natural touch gestures resembling those of a finger and wrist movement.
The mouse also uses a “pen-like” grip rather than a “claw-like” grip, which Odgers says is a problem in most mobile ones.
Odgers says the biggest struggle along the way has been developing the new technology as well as commercialising it, but succeeding in that has been “very gratifying”.
The GT mouse will be on show at the January CES event held in the US, which is the largest consumer trade show in the world. Over 160,000 people are expected to attend.