What are the strengths of our concept?
- Uniqueness: Our product Handle-pal is very unique. During the process of searching for Competitors, we didn’t find any company that produces the same product as us.
- Potential: The way our product works is by sending data from Handle-pal to the smartphone. Then the phone decides what to do with those data. In the later on development, this concept can be Expanded to other functions that are useful while biking such as control the lighting, electrical horn and monitoring the distance the user has traveled.
- Safety: Listen to music while riding bike can be dangerous, but we can’t force those people who do to change their behavior, which means that they can’t listen to music while biking. Our approach to this is to reduce the possibility of causing those accidents by placing Handle-Pal on the handle, this way the biker doesn’t need to lift their hand off the handle, but they still have full control over the songs and volumes etc.
- Price: The potential consumer for this product are young adults, the majority of them doesn’t have too much money to spend on leisure products, such as our product. The solution we have for them is to create a device to connect with their smartphone, which they already have one. This way the consumer doesn’t have to spend extra money for the overlapping function that’s already provided by the smartphone. The physical product can be produced within 5 EUR / piece (everything included) by outsourcing to china. which means our target group would be able to get that product with a very Low price.
- Sound Quality: Fact is cable headphone has better sound quality than Bluetooth. Bluetooth is more flexible than cable headphones. With handle-pal, the user will be able to have the sound quality of cable headphone and the flexibility of Bluetooth headphone while biking.
- Save touch screen: In some cases, the touch screen does not work as we want it to. For example, It’s raining and you don’t want the phone to get wet and cause water damage to the smartphone. There is where Handle pal comes in handy, It gives the user full control of the smartphones by acting as a remote to you smartphone.
What are the weaknesses of our concept?
- Placement: The placement of handle-pal is right next to the bell on the handle. The downside of this is it can be hard to reach with the bell in between the hand and the handle pal. In the later on development, we will improve this issue by redesigning the handle-pal to make it easier and more natural for the user to interact with.
- Waterproof: This version of our product does not have waterproof material, but that is on our development plan, to make handle pal waterproof.
- Battery slot: Our product handle-pal needs a coin cell battery, This version of handle pal does not include a battery slot. If the user would like to change the battery, They will have to open the case and put it on the board.
- production: The case of handle pal is made by 3D printing. It’s exciting new technology but in the production perspective, it takes too much time to print one case. In the future, if we proceed to mass production module injection would be a better and faster solution.
- Material: This version of handle pal need a component called light blue bean, this component costs too much in the production process. On our development plan, we will find the alternative to replace light blue bean with normal BLE that’s imported from china. this way we can reduce 80% of the production cost. This will give us a much bigger profit margin.
- Technical: This current version of handle pal connects to the app our team developed, which means that the user can only access the songs in this app. The better option for the develop in the future would connect the handle pal to existing apps such as Spotify or Soundcloud. this way the user will be able to access their own playlist without installing an extra application on their phone.
What went well regarding to the process ?
- Concept: In the beginning of the project, we had some difficult time with coming up with ideas that fit everyone’s interest and at the same time it should be a concept that can fit the market’s needs. In the end of brainstorming, we come up with an idea that all of us like and we stick to it even when the process gets more and more difficult in the development stage.
- Planning: We planned out when should the technical development be done, when should the design process be finished, same goes with marketing and research process. With a little bit of delay but we more or less deliveries the work in time. The other positive thing is that we come up with a plan B when the process seems to be impossible to achieve. The overall development more or less matches with our planning.
- Teamwork: We have a team of five, which is quite a big group. Every one of us has a main focus area of this project. For example, rob’s focus is on visual development and product design, Paul’s focus is on 3D design and 3D printing etc. One of reason is that it helps all of us to build up our portfolio towards the profession we want to do in the future. All the tasks connect with others. For example, rob made the sketch of product design and give it to Paul make 3D model and print. For me, my focus was on visual development, but due to the technical difficulty of this concept, I helped our programmer to do some technical work to make sure the development move on smoothly. It’s also mentioned on the blog.
- Team relationship: Over the past eight weeks of the project, our teammates did not have any real negative feeling toward each other. We are able to communicate with each other calmly when there is some unexpected situation happened during the development. The team maintained a healthy working relation from the beginning to the end.
- Passionate: After the brainstorming process we had the concept of handle-pal. All the team members liked the concept and we are all passionate about it. We believe this concept is something useful and awesome and ready to put energy to it and make it happen. In the end, we did make it happen, the passion for the concept is one of the key element that we make this concept coming all together.
- Adapt feedback: Every week we will go to the lessons and ask feedback from the teacher. We adjusted our team plan and development direction base on the feedback the teachers gave us. Do work that the teacher mentioned to us that we didn’t think of ourselves, for example, the league issues of listening to music while biking in holland. The Profit margin and control the finance input of mass production etc.
What could be better regarding to the process ?
- Delivery tasks: We all had times that didn’t deliver the tasks we suppose to delivery from time to time, some people had more of that delay than some people had less. Which caused the delay of the overall development process. In the perspective, we could improve ourselves and put the team on the top of our list. think about the consequence if we don’t deliver the things we supposed to deliver, How important is that task? can that task wait or not. Also, we should inform the teammates if the task can not be delivered in time. Ask help from another team member.
- Team meeting: For the team meeting, We mostly see it as a place to discuss what we should do for next week and share the work we did from last week. What we could improve is that prepare some question before the meeting and discuss it with the team. Also this way we could get help from the teacher more effectively.
- Stress management: I will take myself as an example for stress management. When I was developing the technical part of handle pal, I had some difficult time with the coding and no one seems to be able to help me with the task. My stress level went very high and in a way make the development process a bit slow. what I could have done is to take one day off without thinking about it and then come back to the work I left. This way I can see the mistakes I made earlier.
The value I provided to the team
My original personal learning goal is visual development & concept art. Due to the technical difficulty of the project I switched my focus on the technical aspect instead to help the development move along smoother. Here is the main work I have been working on for the past 8 weeks.
- Make the connection between a light blue bean and the smartphone
- Design the User interface of the mobile app
- Designing the webpage of Kickstarter link