While developing software has become a lot easier over past 30 years, building hardware still remains incredibly hard.
This was one of the key points repeated at last week´s meetups with local startup and hardware communities in Helsinki, Tallinn, Tartu and Riga by Zak Homuth, CEO of hardware engineering collaborative platform Upverter and open hardware blogger. For example, unlike in software business, for hardware companies the step from a popsicle sticks and duct tape prototype to a real product in customer´s hands still requires about 18 months and several hundred thousand dollars.
Ales Spetic, CEO of Cubesensors, a company producing smart devices for monitoring and making indoors environment healthier, and author of An Investor’s Guide to Hardware Startups thinks one of the biggest challenge faced by hardware startups is the lack of easy repair options, once the product is shipped out. “You just have one shot to make it right, send the product out and make your customers happy.” He also stressed the need to focus on business: “The stories of high growth and traction without revenue do not apply in hardware. You´ve got to make things and sell them.”