Update: $9 Computer “C.H.I.P.” Nears $2M During the Final Week on Kickstarter; Addresses Backers’ Questions

With only seven days until its crowdfunding campaign comes to an end, Next Thing Co.’s nine dollar computer CHIP has successfully raised over $1.8 million on Kickstarter thanks to nearly 35,000 backers.

C.H.I.P. 5As previously reported, C.H.I.P is a tiny and easy to use computer that can be used much like a regular-sized device. Users can work in LibreOffice and save their documents to C.H.I.P’s onboard storage. The new computer also has built in WiFi + Bluetooth, meaning you can play games and can surface the web without any struggles.

C.H.I.P is designed to work with any screen. Old or new. Big or small. Simply just connect through its built-in composite output or add a simple adapter for either VGA or HDMI. Other features include, pre-loaded with Scratch, an easy to learn language that teaches the basics of programming; has a lot of games (retro and new); and works with MIDI keyboards.

The company specs are:

  • 3,000 mAH battery
  • 4.3″ 470px x 272px screen w/ resistive touch
  • Full Super-Clicky QWERTY keyboard
  • Rugged Injection Molded Shell
  • Fully open source
  • GPIO breakouts
  • C.H.I.P. is removable via hatch

Dave Rauchwerk, one of Next Thing’s three founders, stated:

C.H.I.P. 6jpg“Chip is a tool for experimenting with computers. The $9 becomes really interesting when lots of people can help make it awesome. We wanted to find a way to not only give everyone access to it but to give them the ability to participate in this process of developing it.”

 

During a recent update, the Next Thing’s team addressed some questions that backers have notably asked during the funding round, including why International shipping is expensive (starts at $20):

“We’ve been in contact with dozens of specialists: distribution centers, freight forwarders, fulfillment companies and customs brokers. We’re doing our best to find more competitive international rates and are trying to get our shipping costs down. Even though C.H.I.P. is small, there are handling, distribution and shipping costs that can’t be skimped on if we want your package to arrive safely.”

Also explaining why they decided to turn to Kickstarter for funding, the team revealed:

C.H.I.P. 1“Right now, we are entirely focused on the Kickstarter campaign. The only way to be an early adopter of C.H.I.P. is through Kickstarter. We plan to make C.H.I.P. available at a later date, but are committed to fulfilling our Kickstarter backers’ pledges first.”

In regards to why backers cannot receive multiple C.H.I.P.’s right now, the team added:

“We’ve held off on allowing multiple C.H.I.P. orders from our early production batches in order to make sure that everyone who wants to be an early adopter via Kickstarter is able. Offering Multiple-C.H.I.P. packs would mean that a single manufacturing run reaches fewer people. Don’t worry, we plan to make C.H.I.P. available in larger quantities later.”

C.H.I.P.’s Kickstarter is set to close next Saturday (June 6th).

 


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