This project's funding goal was not reached on November 30, 2012.
About this project
A Bluetooth extension phone that makes calls through mom and dad’s current cell phones.
NO Monthly Fees! NO Contracts! NO Worries!
Praise for Pipsqueak
What Do I Get For Backing Pipsqueak?
Our most exciting reward is definitely an actual live Pipsqueak starting as low as $50. We've got other goodies to say Thank You for backers at less than $50 (see rewards descriptions to the right ---> ), and we've also got a Fully Custom Super Pipsqueak Bundle at the $200+ level. Design your own Pipsqueak!
How Does Pipsqueak Work?
Pipsqueak® is a Bluetooth phone designed just for kids ages 3 and up. Connecting like a wireless Bluetooth headset, Pipsqueak will work with nearly every cell phone out there including iPhones and Androids (and all Bluetooth capable phones) allowing mom or dad to route an incoming call directly to their child.
If we are successfully funded on Kickstarter we will also be able to complete our smartphone applications (iPhone and Android) that will enable mom and dad to select numbers from their contacts that are permitted to pass through to Pipsqueak. This means no chance that a kid ends up talking to someone mom or dad doesn't approve of!
Pipsqueak is telling Daddy about the homerun he missed while he was away on business.
It's telling Grandma about the dance recital and thanking her for the flowers she sent.
It's handing safe technology to a child that gives them freedom to connect to those away from them, empowering children and their grown Loved Ones to create memories that will last for years to come.
REALLY Easy to Set Up – Pipsqueak will work on any Bluetooth capable phone with a few simple steps. After the one-time set up your child can talk on their very own mobile device while your expensive smart phone is safely on the counter and out of harm’s way.
Any parent with small children and a cell phone knows the risks of handing their pricey cell phone over to their child. With Pipsqueak parents no longer have to worry about missing that phone call they are expecting or worse yet, getting their phone back with emails deleted or the touch screen damaged.
About 20 months ago I was standing in the kitchen getting dinner ready when our oldest daughter (then 3 1/2) came in talking to her Grandma on my smartphone. She said “goodbye gramma” and handed me the phone.
As I hung up the call and wiped the cheek-jelly smudges from the touch screen it occurred to me that there ought to be a more convenient phone for our kids than my smartphone. Not only is my phone very expensive but it's also pretty easy to damage.
That’s when I said to my husband “How hard would it be to make a Bluetooth phone for Lilah?”
My husband Michael has been in the wireless phone industry since before we started dating 14 years ago. His experience has given him just enough knowledge and contacts to be dangerous with this type of idea. He thought a Bluetooth kids’ phone was a “brilliant idea” and started talking about a little flip phone with changeable covers and charms, fun sounds and on and on….as he tends to do.
We became consumed with this idea, and realized Pipsqueak was the solution to so many problems we grappled with as parents of young children faced with handing them a phone way too "adult" for them. We discovered other parents faced this dilemma, too. Pipsqueak is the answer! That's why we founded Yip Yap, Inc. and we've worked exhaustively for a year-and-a-half to make Pipsqueak a reality. We're now on the verge of our first production run. But to make that happen we need your help Kickstarter!
Why Might Pipsqueak Be Safer Than a Cell Phone?
Bluetooth has a power output value less than 1/1000th the output limit for cell phones as set by the FDA and FCC. For additional information check out what the American Cancer Society has to say about Bluetooth versus Cellular.
Tell Me What It Does Again…
Pipsqueak allows children to talk with their loved ones in a way that is safe, age-appropriate, affordable, and fun. Plus, Pipsueak has a lot of great features that make it more than just a Bluetooth phone.
- It’s a Phone – Your cell phone will think it’s connected to a Bluetooth headset, and your kid will think they are connected on their own phone.
- It’s a Music Player – Capable of holding hundreds of full-length songs, Pipsqueak plays your child’s existing music loaded via USB from your computer. OR, like a wireless speaker you can stream music via Bluetooth from any Bluetooth music source.
- It's Fully Customizable - Faceplates, Dangles (charms), Screen Inserts, Alert Sounds and Audio Content allow kids to personalize their Pipsqueak and allows Pipsqueak to keep up with children's ever changing tastes.
- It's a Soundboard - By loading audio files into the device Pipsqueak takes on the voice of a child's favorite character or plays novelty sounds that compliment whatever theme the child has at that time. Updating the sounds is easy enough for children to do themselves at YipYap.com.
- It’s a CopyCat Voice Recorder – Kids can record their own “voice message” on the device. When they play it back everyone will laugh at how CopyCat makes their recording sound differently each time.
- It’s a Wander Alert – When Pipsqueak is with your child and connected to a parent’s smartphone, the mobile app will alert the parent if Pipsqueak loses its connection. The range so far has been in excess of 50 feet.
Manufacturing: This first run of Pipsqueak devices will be manufactured in San Antonio, TX by a shop that has been in the business for 30 years and stands by everything they do. When we asked them how many units out of 5,000 would be DOA (dead on arrival) they said “ZERO” rather matter-of-factly. So far their work on our prototype rounds has been great. We visited their factory a couple months back and were thoroughly impressed with the robotic arms on the assembly lines. We wanted to take pictures to share with you all but they have strict privacy policies to protect their customers so they said "No." But we did get to wear cool anti-static smocks and protective glasses!
With three others we founded Yip Yap, Inc. and officially began the project (wrote our first check) in August 2011 after 6 months of brainstorming, planning and budgeting. From the beginning we told everyone that all money would be put toward the product and associated expenses, nobody has drawn any income from funds we had available to us.
More than 30 people are now contributing to make Pipsqueak a reality. We hope moms and dads see Pipsqueak as an inexpensive, fun, durable and SAFE alternative to handing over expensive smart phones to their kids.
We hope kids see Pipsqueak as an easy and fun way to connect, play and learn.
There is no telling where this journey will lead us but we know we are having so much fun. And we know that we are doing everything with as much Love and Grace as we can. We pray that Yip Yap, and our first product Pipsqueak, will brighten the world in some way by giving more kids the opportunity to connect with Loved ones and explore technology safely.
Where is kid #4?
Well, our little guy Lazarus arrived 33 days earlier than expected, which was just 6 days before our video shoot! Was it crazy? Don’t even get us started…
Q&A (If you have a question not on the list below you can hit the contact button or email us at KickstarterSupport@YipYap.com)
Our video was filmed
and produced by Duane Codrington, firstname.lastname@example.org
Additional graphics by Tim Uys (email@example.com) & Ryan Hostetler (firstname.lastname@example.org). Guys, thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts!
Risks and challenges
Pipsqueak is nearly done. Although we've done as much as we can to minimize any potential risks to completing this project there remains some risk. We have worked closely with our suppliers on component availability and they have assured us that our necessary board components are available in the quantities we anticipate, but that may change depending on how many Pipsqueaks get ordered on this initial run. Our manufacturing partner in San Antonio has been in the business over 30 years though so we feel good about their forecasting and manufacturing capabilities. We also have a backup manufacturer and supplier identified that could help if the demand for Pipsqueak is more than anticipated. The board design, component selection and layout is complete, so no apparent risk there.
On the mobile phone apps we feel we've allotted ourselves plenty of time to get those complete before the Pispqueaks deliver in May but there is some risk that those may not be fully complete at launch. Although our media design partner sees no reason why we wouldn't get them 100% complete, if for some reason we fall short at delivery the contingency is that we will deliver whatever functionality is completed by then and release additional functionality through follow-up releases at no cost to Pipsqueak users.
If any firmware changes are required for Pipsqueak after they deliver, not to worry, all Pipsqueaks will be forward compatible through firmware updates on YipYap.com using the included USB cable. So all Pipsqueaks can have the most current firmware regardless of when they were acquired by users.
There always remain the "unknowns" that accompany any first-time project. We may not know what we don't know, if you know what we mean? ;) But there are a lot of people (more than 30) who are highly skilled in their respective areas of expertise and who are passionate about bringing Pipsqueak to the world. So far there hasn't been anything we couldn't figure our way through so be assured that if something unforseen does arise we will be sure to communicate openly and honestly with our backers about what is happening, and we will do whatever is within our means to overcome it.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Kickstarter's new rules for Product Design projects only allow project creators to offer a quantity of 1 product per Kickstarter backer.
If everything goes as planned on KS then we’ll be able to give the first payment to the factory by the end of November. Our factory feels good about a delivery date in April so we are telling our backers May just to be safe, then we’ll immediately turn them around and ship them out.
Studies show parents are handing their cell phones to kids as young as TWO, but every household and child is different. We can tell you that we designed Pipsqueak to withstand occasional baby/dog slobber, dropping, splashing, crushing, etc. If you think they might be too young, grab one anyway because they won't be too young for long!
We went back and forth about a working display early on but now are 100% glad we chose not to put a real display on Pipsqueak for these reasons:
Cost – It would have increased the cost of Pipsqueak by 30-40%.
Durability – Displays would have been the weakest link on the device.
Battery Life – A display is the biggest drain on the battery, cutting it by > 50%.
Personalization – Kids can use the easily customizable Pipsqueak display as another way to express themselves. Templates come in the box and screens are available on http://yipyap.com/ for free download so kids can design and cut out their own pictures.
Benefit? - Many of Pipsqueak's users can't read anyway, so how much would a display really enhance the value given all the other factors above?
Hopefully not very easily if we designed it right. That part in the video where our nearly 7-year-old 50lb. son steps on Pipsqueak isn't fake, that's a real working Pipsqueak (still) and he put his full weight on it...about 15 takes in a row. You would be surprised how hard it is to shoot something as simple as a foot walking on a phone.
Should we find ourselves fortunate enough to exceed our goal we plan to reinvest the money into additional development of the website and mobile phone apps (we have big plans for both) that will enable additional functionality. Yes all Pipsqueaks will be upgradable so all Pipsqueaks will benefit from future enhancements.
- Bluetooth 3.0 technology
- 500 mAh lithium-polymer rechargable battery (mini USB), up to 4 hours talk/music time
- Weighs 2.5 ounces
Our youngest daughter just turned two and she'll have her own Pipsqueak, partly because we don't want to deal with the drama of her brother and sister having one and her not, but also because she already enjoys playing with the prototypes. She speaks pretty well (as you may have seen on the video) but most likely won’t talk much on her phone at first. She Loves music though. And she has a voice recorder toy that cracks her up. So we know she’ll enjoy Pipsqueak more as a toy now but as she matures and engages the phone functions she can use Pipsqueak in new ways. Not many toys can grow with a child like Pipsqueak will!
Yup, just drag and drop like you would a portable hard drive using the included USB cable.
You tell us! We will have a building block faceplate set available when Pipsqueaks deliver that is compatible with Lego and other building bricks of that same design. We've also got prototypes of 3D car faceplates and a few other fun designs. If you have any ideas lay 'em on us!
Any 3.5mm stereo plug will work on Pipsqueak. The Pipsqueak Super Pak ships with a kid-sized stereo headset!
It sure will. But we'll need to sort out that international charger situation. The charging cable is USB so if you already have a USB wall adapter you should be all set.
- (47 days)