Kickstarter is rapidly becoming one of the most talked-about websites on the internet. Designed to give inventors and entrepreneurs around the world the chance to gain investment from anyone, it has already seen several success stories.
Now open to the UK and continuing to expand, 2013 is going to be a big year for Kickstarter. Below are some of our favourite projects shaping up to be the movers and shakers of Kickstarter in 2013.
Makey Makey is one of the most bizarre and brilliantly simple concepts for a piece of technology we have seen and typifies what makes Kickstarter such fun.
In essence, Makey Makey will transform pretty much anything into a keyboard and mouse. It requires no programming, soldering or complex tech knowledge. You just plug the hardware in, hook up crocodile clips to whatever you want and then you are away.
Makey Makey was a real Kickstarter success. Funding acquired, the simple project has gone on sale. You can pick one up from Firebox here for £39.99.
Though 3D printing remains an expensive practice, Form 1 hopes to change that. A Kickstarter project set up to bring 3D printing to the masses, Form 1 rivals the much more expensive alternatives.
The project has also surpassed its $100,000 goal, with contributions currently standing at $2,945,885. Plenty of cash to play with then. The Form 1 can be pre-ordered now at the Form 1 website.
This Form 1 could be the first true piece of pro-grade affordable 3D printing kit and could change dramatically the way the technology is used and viewed. Crucially, it is much more simple to use than other options, making it a viable piece of kit for those new to the whole world of 3D printing.
The idea of virtual reality goggles is nothing new. The difference with Oculus Rift is in the way it works: no more gigantic set of goggles hanging off your face or light leaking through the sides.
The Oculus Rift is a premium product. It features a high-resolution display, low latency head tracking and an extremely wide field of view. Games have to be Oculus ready, and at the moment Doom 3 is the only one.
High-paying investors get a development kit - which from the look of it has been passed under the noses of some of the big names in gaming. Gears of War guru Cliff Blezinski is a particularly big fan.
Expect Oculus Rift to get more exciting as the software development kit begins to become more widespread. Who knows, decent VR could be coming to the home in 2013.
Instacube has been going for a while now and has way outstripped its $250,000 funding goal. And it has big ideas for 2013. The clever Instagram-streaming box plans on taking the tech one step further, shipping with speakers built into the box if it can hit $750,000 of funding.
At the moment, Instacube is basically selling its product through Kickstarter. We did find it on some UK websites, but it won’t be turning up until April 2013. So those after one of the clever Instagram-based photo frames are going to have to wait a little longer.
What is exciting is that the technology is being taken further. First speakers and who knows what next?
Kickstarter has plenty planned on the gaming front in 2013 but by far the most exciting is Elite Dangerous. A remake of the classic Elite, this crowdfunded title will be talk of the town once it is released.
The original game was stuff of legend and, with a Kickstarter target of $1.25 million, it looks like this one will be as well - or at least should be.
Expect spaceships, space battles, planets and multiple players. There isn’t that much else to go on yet in terms of gameplay apart from this trailer. Expect however to see plenty more as the title gets ready for its Spring 2014 release.