About this project
Here's a quick chart of the new options that has become available through updates or stretch goals. Only a few hours left to get your pledge fixed on the right reward tier. You'll choose your color when we send the survey after the campaign ends. Everyone who has pledged for a Premium Thermodo can choose a Green Kickstarter Edition Thermodo instead. Everyone who has pledged for a Regular Thermodo, can choose a Red Thermodo instead of the Black or White one. Get both by pledging for one of the Thermodo Sets (See Reward Tiers).
Got more questions? See if they haven't been answered in the FAQ
Follow the Wrap party directly from Copenhagen on this Live Stream.
What is Thermodo?
Thermodo is a sleek little thermometer for your mobile devices, accurate and expertly built hardware that you can have with you everywhere. Thermodo is designed and produced by Robocat. Support for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Android. Now with Thermodo companion app with SDK for iOS and Android. Windows Phone support possible once stretch goal is reached.
How does Thermodo work?
Thermodo consists of a passive temperature sensor built into a standard 4 pole audio jack enclosed by a sturdy housing. This allows your mobile device to read Thermodo's temperature straight from the audio input. Thermodo sends an audio signal through the temperature sensor. This sensor will then attenuate the signal amplitude depending on the actual temperature. This attenuation can now be detected on the microphone input and through software we calculate the corresponding temperature. Easy peasy! We call this the Thermodo Principle™. Simply plug Thermodo into your device and start the companion app or any other Thermodo enabled apps of your choice. The temperature reading takes place instantly. Thermodo is powered by your device. No external power is required, it can even run in the background while you do important stuff.
Where can I use Thermodo?
You can measure the temperature indoors as well as outdoors. Track the temperature and see how it rises after you turned on the radiator or check how the temperature drops during a summer night. No network connection required. Thermodo comes with a neat little keyring so you'll always have it with you.
We blasted right through the 35K base goal. We now have the factory floor and all the minimum requirements to get production underway. With a growing budget, there's a few other things we can shoot for. Help us reach these goals!
Apps and developers
We are building a free Thermodo companion app for iOS and Android, but Thermodo already works with our own apps, Thermo and Haze. So once you get your Thermodo, there should be plenty of things to do with it. However, we won't stop there. We're making an open source software developer kit (SDK) available to anyone who wants to build their own Thermodo integration into their products. The sky is the limit here, Mac apps? PC apps? Linux apps? Other iOS, Android and Windows Phone apps? Arduino or Raspberry Pi support? Social temperature? Runkeeper + Temperature? We'll see.
Why would I want to track my temperature?
It's incredible how much we rely on forecasts and so called "local" temperatures - the truth is that temperature values available online or through apps comes from weather stations that can easily be miles away. Nothing beats taking the measurement yourself right where you are. A small personal weather station with you at all times, how cool is that?!
In the winter of 2011 we launched a tiny free thermometer app. We called it Thermo. It was one of those projects we build because we thought it would be fun and different. It wasn't a complex app, it was just a nice simple approach to weather in a great design. Apparently we weren't the only ones who thought this was a neat idea. To this day we've had more than 2 million downloads and hundreds of thousands of happy users around the globe using it every day. Unfortunately not everybody seemed to like it. Occasionally we would get 1-star reviews like this one:
The thermometer analogy we used in the app was obviously displaying the outside temperature as the iPhone can't possibly measure the immediate temperature around you… But it got us thinking… What if it could? Now we want to turn bad app reviews into a great new product.
Why we need you
We are software developers and we know a lot about what there is to know about making digital products, but as we've learned over the past few months: building hardware is costly. We've done as much work as possible and spend all of our salaries on making the prototypes, but to get to the next stage of production we'll need molds, components and factory time. Here're some of the specific things your funds will go towards.
- Sensors, Resistors and PCB's - the components that make up the brain of Thermodo.
- Injection Molds - to manufacture the awesome housing of Thermodo.
- Thermal conductive filling - makes your Thermodo more responsive.
- Tooling, manufacturing and assembly - We've been rather picky with how Thermodo looks and feels, so the actual production is a highly specialized series of steps.
- App development - honestly, most of your funds won't go here, we are working weekends and pouring time into the project to get both the iOS companion app and the SDK ready, but we'll occasionally need a cup or coffee or a pizza.
- Shipping and packaging - getting your new Thermodos to you, wherever you are.
Where we are
We're currently at our 3rd revision prototype of Thermodo and we finally feel that the product is ready to enter into the next stage of production. This is why we're launching the kickstarter now. We've done as much work as possible up until this point - now it's time to see if our passion for exact ultra-local temperature measurements and shiny gadgets is shared by others. Below you'll see a nice walkthrough of the current 3D model and a few upclose shots of Thermodo on our favorite devices. This thing is infinitely more real than when we soldered the first raw prototypes.
Here's a short roadmap outlining the plans for the next few months if the funding succeeds.
Meet the team
Robocat is a Danish software studio. We’ve been building unique digital products out of cozy Copenhagen for the last 3 years. Each of our adventures is guided by a strong sense of craftsmanship. We strive for pixel perfection; whether we’re building a utility or service we always try to imbue our products with a sense of wonder. The team consists of (from left to right) Kristian, Michael, Willi & Ulrik teamed up by our engineer Marcus (below). We all have a seemingly unhealthy interest in the weather and want to create something that makes you go 'wow'.
Way of the future
We all carry tiny pocket computers around which are helping us to understand and interact with the environment around us, through quantified data. This is something we think is infinitely cool. We're hoping that Thermodo and all the experiences we're making is just the first step into this new playing field.
Thermodo is only designed to measure the temperature of your environment with your mobile device. Hence, its operating range is only specified within the limits of common consumer electronics. During the testing phase, we specified its range from -20° C to +50° C (-5º F to 120º F). For comparison, iPhone 5's operating temperature is 0° to 35° C (32° to 95° F). Thermodo may not be used as a body thermometer, nor for measurements of fluids.
Outage font by Dave Whitley (davewhitley.com). Music by Mark Zubek and Ashkan Hobian, Luke Daniel Neumann & SIam 53.
Risks and challenges
• Approval in the App Store. Writing software for the Apple App Store always contains the risk of being rejected in the first place. In such a case our software needs another technical or visual iteration and the release might be delayed.
• Quality Control. We are quite picky when it comes to the mechanical quality of our products. Even though we came in contact with several other prototypes of things manufactured by our supplier and despite the confirmed confidence of our partners who worked with the manufacturer several times before, there is always the risk that we are not 100% satisfied with result of the 0-series. In such a case an additional iteration and improvement of the manufacturing process might be necessary. This rather unlikely scenario would delay the manufacturing process.
• Electrical Tests: To make sure the Thermodos work as they are supposed to, we are going to test each unit electrically. If we receive orders up to 1500 pieces, we will test the devices ourself in our HQ before shipping them to the customer. For orders higher than 1500 pieces we will need some extra hands in order to be capable of performing the electrical test in time. That would mean we need to set up an electrical test procedure directly at the factory which could lead to delay.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
With the current design we can't add more sensors without sacrificing the simplicity of the design and the size of Thermodo. We will look into this for future improvements.
When plugged in Thermodo is flush with the device like any regular jack pole, think of it as a slightly larger headphone jack. It's impossible to accommodate every cases there exist. Thermodo extents roughly 7mm (for the final product) in diameter so it depends on what sort of case you've got, the thickness of it and how wide a hole it has around the audio jack. It's also possible to use 3.5mm 4 pole extension cable.
We talked about this in one of the updates: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/robocat/thermodo-the-tiny-thermometer-for-mobile-devices/posts/445046
The Thermodo sensor range is actually better than most consumer electronics, chances are your smartphone will give out before Thermodo. For comparison the iPhone 5's operating temperature is 0° to 35° C (32° to 95° F).
While the Thermodos are engineered here in Denmark, they're assembled abroad and we're doing our fulfilment from the US. Kickstarter has some very particular rules about shipping; we can't charge americans for shipping (the system simply doesn't allow it) which means we've had to come up with alternatives for the logistics. So unfortunately there's not much we can do about the actual shipping price outside the US. But we are working on a solution that at least ensures european purchasers that their Thermodos will be send from within the EU to avoid any overseas taxation. We ♥ everyone who backed us despite these additional shipping costs.
Energy consumption is an important topic for us. Not only due to environmental concerns but also regarding the convenience of long battery life. Thermodo uses the headphone interface on your mobile device, however the power drawn by Thermodo is only a fraction of the power used to drive your regular headphones. The impedance of Thermodo at 25º C is around 100 000 Ohm. That leads to a power consumption of about 10 µW. To put that in perspective: The iPhone 5 Battery has a capacity of 5.45Wh. If that battery would only drive this 10µW load, that battery would last 545000 hours. Thats around 62 years non stop temperature measurement. Of course the power consumption of the iPhone itself is much higher than that. However this example should show that the power drawn by Thermodo has almost no impact on your battery life.
Once the campaign is successfully concluded, we will send out a survey where you can choose the color of your Thermodo.
Support this project
- (33 days)