November 26, 2012 at 1:20 pm

Would You Buy This Integrated iPad Speaker on Kickstarter?

Kickstarter campaigns are becoming pretty good marketing.

Press release snippets (our emphases) from the ORA: Ultimate Sound System for iPad Kickstarter, which seems like it could make music- and other sound-oriented apps (especially videogames) sound a lot better:

Designed for iPad, ORA merges high-quality sound with a beautifully crafted, portable design that allows users a better way to enjoy their favorite movies, music, apps, and more… Kickstarter campaign to raise funds and build awareness

ORA provides immersive audio quality, portable protection, and beautiful design in an affordable package. The device features eight tuned, front-facing speakers which deliver five times the sound volume compared to the iPad’s standard speaker, an integrated cover that protects the speakers and screen and flips open into a stand, and a lightweight and rugged enclosure. ORA also includes its own battery, allowing users up to 10 hours of unplugged play time. The product differs from traditional iPad audio products by packing a high quality audio system into a portable package that compliments the iPad design aesthetic.

‘[The iPad's] amazing display provides a unique viewing experience, yet the existing audio output doesn’t always live up to the high visual standard,’ said Shift CEO Olivier Boireau. ‘Our product provides the high quality sound your iPad deserves…’

The companies today [November 19] begin a 30-day Kickstarter campaign to raise $450,000 [so far: $48,892] to aid in manufacturing and engineering costs for an initial production run. Backers of the project can donate to help produce the ORA Sound System, with rewards offered for certain pledge tiers. Backers can receive their own ORA starting with a $99 pledge [i.e. the speaker costs $99].

‘What separates us from some other Kickstarter campaigns is our long track record of delivering innovation,” said David Thorpe, Co-Founder, Industry.

ora ipad speakerClearly, Kickstarter is not only (just) about raising money for pet projects, it’s sometimes essentially just a pre-ordering system for established manufacturers, with a little extra merchandise thrown. That’s not to say that this thing doesn’t sound good — it’s just interesting, how Kickstarter is now something real companies use to fill pre-orders.

  • Eight speakers that deliver more than five times the loudness of the iPad and reduces the total harmonic distortion (THD) level well below competitive designs, bringing clarity to voice and instrument audio.
  • A Digital Signal Processor that controls the 3D stereo expansion in both landscape and portrait orientations, creating a wider stereo image and a full, immersive experience.
  • Dynamic range control, which makes use of the 16-Watt peak power available to present small audio cues and prevent distortion from louder audio.
  • Parametric equalizer that adjusts the speakers’ dynamic response with optimized volume to ensure a better listening experience in all conditions. [wtf?]
  • Compatible with iPad 2 and iPad 3 [no iPad 1]
  • Integrated rechargeable Li-Ion battery for up to 10 hours of play time
  • Standard iPad 30-pin connector [i.e. not the new iPhone 5]
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • 5moufl

    I would never buy an iPad.