Hardware Studio has two components: Toolkit and Connection.
Toolkit is an education hub, open to anyone (however, Creators with technical hardware products will likely get the most benefit). Toolkit will have a ton of great content in a variety of formats, such as articles, blogs, technical data sheets and webinars, to help Creators at any stage of their journey. For example, let’s say you’re a first time Creator who doesn’t have any idea what a BOM (Bill of Materials) is, Toolkit is the right place for you. What if you’re a seasoned Creator bringing a second (or third or fourth) product to market, but you’re not sure if you want to manufacture in the U.S., Mexico or Asia? Toolkit is the right place for you too. The content on Toolkit will come directly from expert teams at Avnet, Dragon Innovation, and Kickstarter, and will also come from guest contributors in the hardware space. There will be blogs, articles, technical data sheets, webinars, etc. In addition, Creators in the Toolkit community will get access to incredible tools, like Dragon Innovation’s Product Planner, which helps organize materials, run reports and more.
The second part of the Hardware Studio program, Connection, is a collaboration between Avnet and Dragon Innovation to offer technical services to Kickstarter Creators. Connection is an application-based program where Creators have an opportunity to receive quotes on design services, help with manufacturing (factory selection, RFQ submission, etc.), discounts on components, and extended use of Dragon Innovation’s Product Planner tool. These will be tangible services to help Creators finalize their designs, create working prototypes, design for manufacturing, and conduct full manufacturing runs.
Bob Merriman is Avnet’s business development manager.