In 2012, Mike Farley and Nick Evans identified a problem that many consumers were facing, and attempted to address it through their crowdfunded startup, Tile. They saw and interacted with numerous people who had trouble keeping track of some of the things they carried with them all the time – phones, keys etc., and so, came with the idea of Tile, a hardware device that could be attached to any of your belongings and tracked via an app on your smartphone. Tile had a fairly straightforward path to success, with very few hitches along the way, and so, stand testament to the legitimacy of crowdfunding as it pertains to developing a business.
Essentially, Farley and Evans developed a toggle of sorts, a small, compact device that could be strapped on to your devices. Then, using Bluetooth technology, they wrote a smartphone app, compatible with both Android and iOS to help you keep track of the toggle and subsequently, your belongings. After putting their idea up on kickstarter for funding, they saw immense success. With an initial goal of $200,000 being met in less than 24 hours, Tile garnered over $2.5 million throughout the course of their kickstarter campaign, which lasted a little over two months.
Since then, the company has embraced its success and has managed to successfully scale up while avoiding any sort of logistic problems. After their launch in 2012, they came up with an upgraded model in 2015 and since, have sold over 4.5 million units. With corporate restructuring, they hired former GoPro leader, CJ Prober as CEO and have moved forward, now offering multiple variations of their product, including Tile Pro, Tile Mate and Tile Slim, all offering a whole suite of features that speak volumes on the leadership and vision of Tile.
Build something you really need yourself.
Today the company is releasing a new version of its gadget and updating its app. Tile is also saying that it has shipped 2 million of the $25 gadgets since it launched a year ago — a remarkable milestone for a product that started life as a crowdfunding campaign.