Our Kickstarter of the Week column looks for the coolest new crowdfunded projects that you can fun on sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo, among others. We're always looking for cool new projects to back because some of the most interesting products we've seen of late - like the Pebble smartwatch and the Oculus Rift - have come from small companies and not giant corporations. We're watching out for what comes next.
There's always a chance that a Kickstarter will not work out, even if it's fully funded, so you should always be aware of the risks involved, but even so, crowdfunding is one of the most interesting spaces in consumer technology today, and definitely worth checking out.
Where else could you find something like the SensorWake, a smell-based alarm clock? The Kickstarter project launched on Wednesday, and it's the most interesting thing we've seen so far this week.
Simply put, it's an olfactory alarm clock that wakes you up to your favourite smell. Developed by French entrepreneur Guilliame Roland, the SensorWake is an alternative to noise-based alarm clocks, which aims to wake you up peacefully with your favourite smells instead. Roland partnered with Givaudan, a French company that works on fragrances and flavours.
On the Kickstarter page, a Givaudan representative says that the company typically works with brands like Unilever, but was attracted to the unusual idea of a scent-based alarm clock. The result was scented capsules, each of which can be used for 60 alarms (a little over two months if you're not waking up on weekends) that range from "Continental Breakfast," which smells of espresso and croissants, to "Candy Rush" (sweet peach and strawberry candy), different aromatherapy choices, and even "VIP Lounge," which smells of dollars.
But can a smell really wake you? On the Kickstarter page, it states that according to consumer tests the company ran on over 100 people, SensorWake will wake you up in under two minutes, 99% of the time. This was backed up with a Scientific American article as well, and of course, if you don't wake up three minutes after the scent alarm goes off, there's also a 'regular' alarm that will ring.
You can see more details in the video below:
The Kickstarter, which launched on Wednesday, has gotten off to a quick start, reaching nearly half its goal in just a few hours. It's too late to grab any of the early bird rewards, but we think it's still worth checking out.
Launched less than 24 hours ago, this Kickstarter has already raised over EUR 30,000 (approximately Rs. 20.9 lakh) against a EUR 50,000 (approximately Rs. 34.8 lakh) goal. The Kickstarter will be accepting funds until July 1, and the SensorWake is estimated to be delivered by November 2015, shipping worldwide. You can back it for EUR 80 (approximately Rs. 5,500) to get the SensorWake, along with two aroma capsules, each of which is supposed to last for two months.
To see more stories from the world of crowdfunding, check out our older Kickstarter of the Week articles.