Tablet Accessories Tech Accessories

Mükava table covers any angle to prop up your laptop or tablet

editors-choiceThe Premise. The aches and pains associated with the fine pleasures of reading from a newspaper, a book, or — more recently, smartphones and tablets — a problem as old as time. The stopgaps we employ to read or surf just a few more pages aren’t very helpful either: laying on your side or even turning upside down can offer temporary comfort but eventually that soreness will return, making it difficult to enjoy devices or books for long periods at a time.

The Product. Tom Keenan’s Mükava Table aims to alleviate that discomfort, ergonomically facilitating the reading of books, magazines, documents, and devices in a home or office setting. It does this either with its Mükava Pads, which allow any device to be attached and swapped no matter the size, or its tucked away book bands to hold up everything else. The product has a few more tricks up its sleeves, too. Located neatly behind it are two USB ports to charge devices, Document Pebbles to attach documents, and a removable USB light for reading without ambient light. The table is versatile enough to be placed in any room while sleek enough to double as a side table when not in use. The campaign also includes their Mükava for Monitor Arm, which fits onto any standard monitor arm with a VISA plate for those places where the full stand isn’t convenient.

The Pitch. The company behind the idea, The Project for Adult Literacy and Schools, LLC, bills itself as a social enterprise looking to donate 10% of every product sold to charities that support their causes. It does a great job in clearly detailing all of Mükava’s strengths as a product with just enough textual information accompanied by bright, clear pictures and informative GIFs. Altogether, the skillful use of mediums paints an easy-to-understand picture of what the product can do. As such, their campaign will go a long way in convincing potential backers to contribute towards their $50,000 goal.

The Perks. Pledging $260 can get you a Mükava in either birch or white, while splurging $300 can net you a premium version in brushed stainless steel. If the entire Mükava is excessive for your setup, a $100 pledge can get you a Mükava for Monitor Arm instead.

The Potential. The Mükava is a stunner. Its smooth lines and versatile nature make it a tempting product for anyone. The Mükava Pad is a standout feature, allowing past and future devices to be attached without worry of ever being outdated. Its price, though, makes a possible purchase a bit harder to swallow considering you could buy a much cheaper case or a stand, even if it probably wouldn’t look as good nor have nearly as much utility.

Kids/Babies Video

Bibayo gives viewers a POV experience of being a baby

bibayoRomantics and those prone to dramatic and poetic dialogue have always bemoaned wanting to see the world through a child’s eyes again. Bibayo is a GoPro-style “point of view” camera that can be put in a baby’s bib to give adults some perspective into their child’s world. The footage can be shared through social media and the device also includes an accelerometer for tracking movement and can trigger the camera if unexpected movement occurs. While the device seems like a great way to capture the early life of children, backers don’t have any footage of the device itself or the video it captures, so supporters will have to take it all on faith. As a concept device, none of the reward tiers include the Bibayo itself at this time.

Connected Objects Health and Wellness Wearables

Violet won’t let you burn, keeps eye on sun

The Premise. There’s nothing like getting outside into the sun. The only problem is that risk of overexposure to the sun is high. It’s difficult to gauge when you’ve had enough and are about to get burned. 

The Product. Violet is a small device worn on your clothing or on a wristband when outside. It syncs up with your smartphone to help determine your UV and vitamin D levels. With the accompanying app, Violet-wearers can customize the device’s data, letting it know their skin type and the SPF of the sunscreen they’re wearing, along with when it was applied. This allows Violet to let you know when you need to reapply sunscreen or when you’re going to burn. It also lets you know when you’ve received the recommended daily amount of vitamin D. Violet is small and silver and uses sleek lights as indicators to the wearer. The app shows you your sun exposure data throughout the month and even lets you keep track of multiple users all at once.

The Pitch. Violet’s campaign video is a bit commercial-y, but does a great job of showing off the product’s various features. It really emphasizes the importance of vitamin D without including too many scary skin cancer facts. The rest of the campaign goes through the prototyping process along with different screen captures of the app in action. Violet needs a whopping $100,000 on Kickstarter in order to reach its goal. 

The Perks. Early-bird tiers offer Violet at $69 and $79 for delivery in April 2015. At its regular price, Violet goes for $105 with delivery also in April 2015. Reward tiers reach up to $2,000.

The Potential. There are too many fitness monitoring devices out there to count, but few monitors that actually look at how the sun affects one’s personal health. CliMate measure multiple environmental conditions including the UV index. Similar to Violet, it acts as a remind to reapply sunscreen, but doesn’t only focus on the sun like Violet does. The campaign focuses a little too heavily on how great vitamin D is and not at how harmful UV rays can be, but the product does measure both. As seen in the campaign, the app and product both look sophisticated and have the added appeal of being able to monitor multiple users, which is perfect for children. While the campaign goal is quite steep, Violet seems like the perfect way to enjoy the sun without having to worry about over-exposure. 

Input Tech Accessories

Zmartframe has the magic touch to transform monitors into touch PCs

zmartframeWith tablets quickly becoming common devices that consumers own, the clunky keyboard-and-mouse input of desktop machines is beginning to feel obsolete. Zmartframe is a device that offers two-point multitouch on any 19- or 22-inch monitor. The device straps onto the monitor and features an easily-calibrated Windows touch PC interface, but with the flick of a switch can also turn any monitor into a stand-alone Android PC. Devices like these have existed for some time now, but the actual functionality has been suspect, so it’s up to Zmartframe to really stick the execution on this one. Supporters can get their fingers on the basic Zmartframe in October 2014 for $260.

Fitness Smartwatches/Bands

PulseOn connects to your smartphone, but not a chest strap

PulseOnLately, we’ve seen a trend in using products to maximize one’s fitness. Apps and gadgets make it easier to see one’s performance level as well as progress made over time. The PulseOn closely resembles pulse-monitoring watches from companies such as Polar, but requires no chest strap. With this wristband, the heart rate is monitored and that information is sent wirelessly to an accompanying app that helps track progress. In addition, this Finnish gadget keeps a record of fitness intensity, distance, time, and speed for runners. One of these wristbands will cost backers $169 USD. PulseOn hopes to raise $150,000 USD in a two month-long campaign on Indiegogo.