Thursday, February 7, 2013

Bugdroid Achieves 10k Supporters

The Bugdroid, the Android OS mascot, has received the 10,000 support it needs to be reviewed for production on Cuusoo.

It took a while, but it has now gotten its official comment and it is moving into the review which will start on March 4th.

Given that the design is simple, direct, and economically scaled (especially in the color and parts budget), the big issues I see are market and precedent.
I assume the market will be an interesting nut for LEGO to crack; there are plenty of Android devices out there but how many Android users identify with the Bugdroid enough that they would want to bring one home, and that being in LEGO.  Well a quick Internet search reveals that there is in fact a market out there for display droids.  Whether or not the market is big enough to pique the interest of LEGO will have to wait to be seen.

Then the question that truly only LEGO can answer: Will LEGO pursue a set based on a corporate icon?  There is a slim chance that Purdue Pete will give us the answer on this before the Bugdroid's review even gets done but I doubt it.  Part of me thinks that LEGO would not consider doing this as it shows favoritism and alliances that can complicate corporate relationships and customer relationships.  Then the more analytical part of me thinks... well, LEGO has already made their version of corporate icons. On top of that, If LEGO can produce Marvel and DC sets at the same time, it can certainly weather the Android fans vs all the Apple fans it obviously has.

On that note, I am a bit surprised that more corporations have not taken advantage of Cuusoo.  So far it has only been Purdue Pete, that has really engaged their core audience behind an icon.  Then again, we do not see all the projects that Cuusoo rejects.  "Advertising" is a nebulous rejection that might be enforced on many projects that never see the light of day.

The Design

I would be very surprised it LEGO changed the design much on this guy.  There does not seem to be any non-canon techniques that need removing. The half sphere head and cylindrical body are building techniques commonly known to FOLs but this would give LEGO the opportunity to share those techniques with a wider audience.  Lastly, this guy has something to the effect of 306 LEGO logos on him... that is a lot of brand recognition.  If 10,000 people supported a design covered in studs, LEGO has no real reason to cover them all up with a more curved design.

Well, they could go with a smaller design using curved element to reduce costs, but that would get rid of the studs resulting in something looking a lot more like a "generic" droid toy and give them none of the interesting market penetration that is one of the purposes for Cuusoo's existence.

"March" Review

The current review "collection phase" ends March 4th.  The only other project certainly in the review is the Exo Suit. At 9830 support, The Legend of Zelda will no doubt be joining them as well.  The Jeep Defender is the next likely project, after Zelda, to reach 10k but it is about 60 days out from that goal based on my tracking of its progress.

Given that there are five other projects in the review before the "March" Review, there may be as many as three additional projects passed into this review.  Although I am quick to point out that we have never seen a project get a pass.