About this project
FUNDED - PRODUCTION STARTED - REWARDS IN JULY
"Worth funding!" and "works extremely well" - Geekanoids
"simple design that delivers a consistent and flexible hold for basically any device" - Android Rundown
Help launch the American made soft smartphone stand. This product looks really simple, and it is. But figuring out how to make it in the USA and keep the selling price reasonable was a huge challenge.
Many times I was told soft foam products like this "aren't made here." It basically came down to U.S. labor rates and standards. My focus is to create a quality product in a responsible way and still compete with overseas rivals. Here's our opportunity to prove that with the right technology and a healthy dose of community support it can be done.
But first, a little about the Podprop and where the idea came from.
- Fits all iPhone models and most other mobile devices
- Rest your device inside or on top
- Circular base is stable on irregular surfaces
- Open channel on bottom facilitates power cords (iPhones) - providing for a docking station capability that's optional
My wife Heather likes to fall asleep watching her iPod Nano. To watch in bed, she would use books or blankets to prop it up - which didn't work very well. So I went online to find a stand for her, but everything was either too flimsy or had hard edges.
This started my quest to create a simple stand with great function, that is both soft and sturdy. My first designs were created using a foam beer can cooler and a pair of scissors. It was functional, but wasn't pretty and had limitations. Now I'm poised to bring a much improved molded foam version to market.
The Podprop is a simple, one-piece stand that can be utilized by different kinds of smartphones and other small mobile devices. It works great for all iPhone models and most other like-sized electronic devices with view screens (BlackBerry, HTC, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, Droids, LG, iPods, etc). The universal design means it doesn't have to be replaced every time you get something new.
This light, portable stand is easy to use and move around. Because it has no attached wires or embedded connectors, you can quickly slip your device in and out. The not-too-tight sizing provides enough room for silicone or plastic cases.
The Podprop is made of high-quality polyurethane foam encased in a durable vinyl coating - so it's easy to clean and hard to break. The stand has some flex to it, and will snap back into shape if squeezed (much like a stress ball).
The Podprop is ideal for:
- Portrait View - custom shape includes dips and curves to keep a portrait phone in place and make it easy to reach lower buttons. A channel in the bottom platform allows for Apple power connectors.
- Landscape View - devices placed in this position can be tilted from 45 to 90 degrees on the supporting front edge.
- FaceTime - iPhone 4 users will find this stand works great for hands-free video chat.
- A sturdy platform for your device when playing games, using Apps, or texting.
- Buying a Pebble E-paper watch for your iPhone or Android? Use this to hold your phone, or as a nice soft place to keep your watch when not on your wrist.
- exterior size: diameter 3.75 inches, height 2.75 inches
- interior fit: devices up to 3 inches wide and 3/4 inch thick
- weight: 3 oz.
- materials: flexible polyurethane foam with a slightly textured vinyl coating (BPA free)
Made in the USA:
The Podprop is best suited to a "molded foam" manufacturing process. The vast majority of these items come from overseas. Although it costs less, their poor factory working conditions and lax environmental standards are not for me. A key aspect of this project is that the Podprop be made here in America. I need to know the manufacturers and be assured that authentic, high-quality materials being used are both safe and environmentally compliant.
I currently work as a business analyst for a publishing company. The math on the Podprop is pretty straightforward. It has to be made in high volume to offset higher U.S. labor costs and be competitive.
Kickstarter pledges will pay for a large capacity multi-chamber mold that forms the expanding foam in the Podprop shape. Creating production capacity is the key project objective and is absolutely essential for the success of this product.
Support creativity / backer rewards:
Have you ever had a idea and wanted to see how far you could take it? Here's an opportunity to help a independent, first-time product designer take a giant leap forward.
Please let others know about this project if you feel they might enjoy a Podprop or would like to help make it possible.
For more information about the Podprop please visit our website at podprops.com
twitter: @podprops | facebook page: Podprops
Absolutely. The Podprop can be made in 30 different colors, and high-quality custom logos can be put on the front and/or back. Our hope is that they can be used for charity fundraisers and other promotions. We can do special custom logo Podprops with a minimum of 25 units. Contact us for info.
A small amount of foam formula (1/10 the size of the stand) is poured into a heated, pressurized mold. It takes several minutes for the foam to expand which is why a large multi-cavity production tool helps keep costs down.
Then a small amount of trim work is done before each stand is coated with a high-quality vinyl coating. The coating has no BPAs or BPHAs and also meets REACH, RoHS and UL 94 HB flammability Standards.
The Podprop is light, flexible and easy to move around. That means it can be used on a desk and then quickly moved to other places like a night stand or kitchen counter. If you drop it, nothing will break or scratch. It's designed for both portrait and landscape. The universal fit is great for people with multiple devices (I use it for my Nano, Blackberry, iPhone 3GS with silicone case and iPhone 4 with bumpers).
Yes, iPhone users have the option to slip a connector through the hole in the sturdy platform. There's also a channel along the bottom that provides a place for the cord to come out the back, therefore keeping the stand flat on a hard surface. When you no longer want to use it as a dock, it's easy to pick up this light stand and unhook the cord. The stand can then be used elsewhere or by other devices.
A heat transfer is just a type of logo that we can put on the outside surface of the Podprop. For the Kickstarter Special Edition stand it's what you see in the pictures. The green and white Kickstarter logos. At first glance they may look like a sticker, but they're actually put on with a hot iron like device. They'll flex with the stand and won't wash off.
Instead of "Heat Transfer" I should have just written "Logo". My bad. Heat Transfer is a product labeling term. But. if you'd like to know more about them or how they are applied I have info on the Podprops facebook page. You can also contact me for more information. Thanks, Ken
Mounts typically have people connect with some kind of clip or magnetic device. Great for when you're in a moving car. The Podprop intentionally stays away from requiring a device to attach firmly. Since it's simply a prop, it better fits the way people use their phones on a desk or around the house. Picking it up, checking something quickly and putting it back down are a breeze.
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