How Two Aussies Got Their Gadget Idea Funded By Kickstarter

This isn't your average story about yet another iPhone case. This is about how two blokes from Melbourne got their quirky idea funded by the world - through Kickstarter, the idea incubator and crowd-funding site. They took their concept from piss talk to reality, and there's nothing stopping you from doing the same.

Australians like to drink. A lot. So why not build a bottle opener into an iPhone case? That's what got Chris Peters (an industrial designer) and Rob Ward (tool maker and plastic injection moulds) thinking. Last week their idea, which we first previewed in June, reached over 100 per cent of their $15,000 target funding on Kickstarter. With two days left, they have almost $19,000 from 400 backers. I asked how they heard about the site:

"Kickstarter was first brought to our attention via the huge success of the Tick-Tock iPod Nano Watch project. We loved the concept of crowd funding and knew we just had to run our own project to see how the process worked. We're both big fans of Apple products and had seen that accessories for their products had a high success rate on Kickstarter so we thought it would be a good fit.

We started designing the Opena a few months before we launched the project on Kickstarter as we had to get the design right and make sure it worked. We had a prototype made, tested it, tweaked the CAD and made a new prototype. This process went through a few cyles until we were happy with the end result. "

How long until drinkers can buy the Opena? Once our funding period is complete it then takes 2-3 weeks for the payments to be processed and then released from Kickstarter. Because we've already hit out funding goal (last week) we were able to place an order for the production tooling and get things moving before the Kickstarter funding was complete. This has allowed us to speed things up, and fingers crossed we'll be shipping out the first production Opena's to all our great backers in late August.

We still have two days left on Kickstarter so if you get in quick you can save $10 of the retail price by backing our project, or be one of the very few to own a limited edition Kickstarter green Opena!

But if you miss out, don't stress as we'll be taking pre-orders through our website at once the Kickstarter project finishes at the RRP of $40.

Thanks to Chris and Rob for their time. So how about it Giz... what's your big idea?



    Dumbest marketing ever.

    Why someone would want an iphone is beyond me anyway!

      just wish you thought of it hey, these guys are gonna make some good coin

    any self respecting aussie male should have a bottle opener on their keyring.
    any blokey nerd should be able to open their pop top beer off someones iphone or any other slightly solid object. a saving of $40 dollars! score

    Kickstarter is cool, and people really are willing to put money down to back you if they like what you're doing.

    I myself was a backer for Eight Bit Strange:


    Every self-respecting aussie who drinks beer that needs a bottle opener (which, really is mostly imported beers) should know how to open a beer with a bic lighter, a ring, a handy ledge or table corner, or a tooth. No bottle opener required.

      I agree. I can open a beer with almost anything, bottle openers are pointless...

      Get some skills and you wont need a bottle opener, its all about leverage when it comes to popping the cap off.

      Can you actually say 'self-respecting Aussie' and 'imported beer' in the same sentence...?

    This is destined to, not fail, but not make much money.

    There would be more projects on kickstarter, but I think lots of people just don't know who they would contact to get the components made.

    You'd also think that any self-respecting Giz-reading Aussie male would probably get the point of this story...

    "nothing stopping you from doing the same" except you need to have an american bank account...

    Curious as to how these guys got their idea on Kickstarter as you need to be a US resident to do so. From website...
    "Be a US resident and at least 18 years of age with a social security number (or EIN), a US bank account, US address, US state-issued ID (driver’s license), and major US credit or debit card."
    Anyway, good luck guys.

    Whilst I have a couple of bottle openers on my keys, I dont always have them with me when I'm drinking. I'm also well versed in opening beers with tables, seatbelts, lighters, even my iPhone. But I drink a lot of beer, and since I backed this project a few weeks ago, there's been countless times my life would've been easier with an Opena.

    There's a lot of beer drinkers with iPhones. I'm pretty confident this product will be huge.

    Major Issue I have is the whole "if you don't have an iPhone". What's wrong with designing this for any number of phones? Get the specs and develop the case in much the same way.

    Yeah, the idea here is nothing special - what's important is how the hell did two Melbourne guys manage to use Kickstarter...? I'm a Melbourne guy, and I know at least one other, and I've got at least 2 better ideas than this one. so I'm more than half way there, but I still can't bloody use Kickstarter.

      its retty easy mate US bank account and contact Id imagine not brain surgery.
      it takes more than an idea dude, it takes indenuity. Clearly these guys have it.

    I was curious too, fantail, about how they got their project up on the US resident only site. Still no idea then, how two Aussies got their gadget idea funded by Kickstarter.

    Hey, a few of you mentioned opening bottles with a bic lighter. I'm not a smoker and I don't really drink beer, but I'm really curious - how the heck do you open a beer with a bic lighter??

      1. Grip said bottle around neck, such that the cap is just poking out your fist.
      2. Using said lighter as lever, and thumb as fulcrum, wedge the base of the lighter under the cap
      3. Push downward on the top end of the lighter until said cap pops off.
      4. Drink.
      5. Enjoy.
      6. Repeat steps 1 to 6

      eventually the lighter wears out on the bottom edge, looks like a rat has been gnawing on it but it depends on the ratio of smokers/beer drinkers. and it takes some practice. I have seen people try it, not do it properly and have some nice plough marks down the knuckle!!! bahahaha

    Guys, you don't need to be a US resident, all you need to do is have the required US details, so if you have a family member in the US with all the credentials and they are willing to accept the funds on your behalf then there's nothing stopping you!

      Which they do.

    The title should read "How Two Aussies Got Their Gadget Idea That Aussie's Can't Buy Funded By Kickstarter". I would be happy to grab one for $30 just for the novelty alone, but I don't have a US bank account...

    Yes... Lets make a chunky iphone case with a readily available implement that... We can say we sucked heaps of morons into backing... Then show our mates... Nice...

      Chunky? its actually pretty sleek dude, compared to others ive seen.
      I myself have an iphone 4 and always have a case on it. Dont see the problem with a good case with a bottle opener attached?!?

      Jealous much?!?

      jealous much?!

    Good luck to you if you use it to open a fizzy bottle whose contents start gushing out of the bottle and onto your expensive device.

      i read that they have tested it with fizzy drinks, no such problem apparently, point taken though.

    One more person who clicked through wondering how Australians got on Kickstarter.

    FWIW, Pozible is one Australian crowdfunding platform that doesn't require you to wrangle US details. (I have no affiliation w/ Pozible but I did back a project there once!)

    I'm one of the Aussies that got on Kickstarter, if you want to know how checkout my how to blog

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