Try to fulfil YOUR dreams, not the dreams of others! Don’t be afraid of brave ideas and mistakes! The basis for the success is in committing as many mistakes along the way as you can. But you have to draw conclusions out of your acts and try to learn from others, learn from people who have already achieved success in your industry. - say creators of Photon, robot that helps children to make a first step into the world of technology!
Tell us a little bit about your team.
The team consists of 6 young and ambitious people with rich experience in developing new technologies (robotics, mobile applications, unusual engineering solutions). We’ve met in college, became friends, discovered our strengths and capabilities and now we’re a fantastic complement to each other.
And what about the project? How a robot can teach kids to code?
Photon is an interactive robot that helps children take their first steps into the world of new technologies. It is easy in use and understandable for children. Photon Robot is integrated with smartphone and tablet. Specially designed application provides children with a number of challenges related to new technologies and programming, and by its achieving children receive points. Earned points can be spent on the development of a robot (children can improve or unlock new functionality), so that each child can have a unique robot with unique parameters. While playing with the robot, children learn how to operate with new technologies, gain knowledge about the basics of programming and develop logical thinking. The solution is designed for children aged 6-12 years.
How you came up with the idea?
There were couple of inspirations to create Photon. First of all, every day we observe that children are surrounded by new technology from the very early age. Adults use computers or mobile devices with common sense, unfortunately children can not do the same. Often they spend long hours staring blankly at the screen of different devices, spending their time meaninglessly. We decided to change the way children use devices and make them learn something valuable from an early age.
In addition, we teach children programming and new technologies. We all see how our world become more and more technical and programming skills are becoming one of the most important professional skills.
You've participated in Imagine Cup 2015. Did it help you?
Participation in the Imagine Cup competition was in fact the beginning of a long road with our business project. Even the preparation for each subsequent stage of the competition helped us to acquire much needed knowledge, and the project itself improved each and every time. Besides, we've met a lot of fantastic people we work with today.
After we had won the national finals of the competition, we joined the acceleration process organized by DotConnect, business partner of Microsoft Imagine Cup. After several months of refining the design, we obtained investment from Xplorer Fund SA. Nothing of this would have happened if we had not participated in Imagine Cup. And that is how a student project has become a company.
And what's happening now with your project?
The project has successful crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter behind. We’ve managed to gather 210 000 zl (~$53 000) within 35 days (150% of the assumed amount). We’ve received orders from almost 30 countries. Besides, campaign helped us to promote the project, in Poland and abroad.
In the next phase of development we’ll run a pilot in schools and prepare our company to a large distribution of robots to the market. Product will be available on the market within a couple of months.
What can you suggest to people who want to start their own business?
Try to fulfil YOUR dreams, not the dreams of others! Don’t be afraid of brave ideas and mistakes! The basis for the success is in committing as many mistakes along the way as you can. But you have to draw conclusions out of your acts and try to learn from others, learn from people who have already achieved success in your industry.
Good luck, Guys!
And all readers who have kids we encourage to purchase your own Photon! Let your child be educated by having fun!
Learn more about Photon Robot: http://meetphoton.com/en/home/