Manuel Díaz Tufinio
August 20, 2013


Currently Kickstarter is the largest global platform that exists to fund creative projects. Established in 2009 and by late 2012, had enrolled nearly just over seven hundred and seven thousand projects. It brought to light projects ranging from movies, music, books, video games and other through crowd-funding (financing agreements). If the project is successful, Kickstarter keeps 5% of the total funds received, Amazon takes 3-5% and the rest is to finance the project. The rewards being investor can be from one or more pieces, dinner with the author or personalized detail.

The Hidden Radio, donated to Archivo by the designers a few weeks ago, was one of the first successful products of the phenomenon around Kickstarter. This speaker does that doesn’t exceeds the 10 cm3, has the ability to connect via Bluetooth and tune the radio with only three buttons and turning his cap. When you buy the Hidden Radio does not include any instructive since its design is one of the most intuitive on the market.


In an interview with John Van Den Nieuwenhuizen, one of the designers of the HIDDEN- said they decided to use that typology in the product for their preference to a design that communicates only the essentials. Hence their fanaticism to Japanese design, especially to Naoto Fukasawa who has a way to communicate only the essential elements of a product. John Van Den Nieuwenhuizen says “his philosophy of adding just enough to a product to then allow it to speak for itself really resonated with us and we tried to create the HiddenRadio with a simple, poetic and intuitive story that required no explanation.” Although we can distinguish details that come from a tradition of  Dieter Rams.


Reproductor de CD’s de Naoto Fukasawa para MUJI.



To finance it they calculated an estimated of $125,000 but the “micro-philanthropy” of the 5,358 sponsors / investors (described by Joseph Grima) in just 60 days came to collect $ 938.771 and the project came to occur with a surplus of 7 times more than the required amount. The extra money allowed them to make improvements in sound quality and implement a lithium ion battery. In this way could become one of the radios with  more commercial and media showcase on 2012.

As Joseph Grima wrote in his article called “The Kickstarter Revolution“, this platform may not be changing the industry but represents a switch in the thinking of industrial processes. (Grima, 2012) Thus, rather than designers expect that  companies approach them with commissions to develop, now are they who came to the industry with the money invested. Due to what this platform  can offer, designers and people interested are undertaking  just with a good idea backed with a video.

Sketch for the HIDDEN Radio. Vía Designboom.


Designers are making this, a new products catapult  that you really want to be selling. This attitude can be seen with HIDDEN Radio designers, who in late 2012 decided to invest in Piccolo LED, a product that came out of Kickstarter. Van Den Nieuwenhuizen said this piccolísima lamp caught his eye for the easy way to operate. But you can guess the back up to a shared design like the HIDDEN, the same practicality, elegance and intuitive design.







FONDEADORA is the simile platform in Mexico but its uptake is lean compared to Kickstarter. Since its inception in August 2011 have attracted more than 3,500 projects and published over 360 initiatives of which 77 have been successful. Gradually this platform is gaining power, with a growth of 10% per month in all areas, but we as designers or interested in these disciplines must act from outside (supporting projects) or from within (undertaken with an idea).
We thank HIDDEN HIDDEN LLC Radio for the donation to our collection and  to John Van Den Nieuwenhuizen and Rene Serrano (Director of FONDEADORA) for accepting to our interview.




1. Molla, Rani. Noviembre 2012.Giga OM. Kickstarter launches are up 50% in the last six months [charts].  http://gigaom.com/2012/11/09/kickstarter-launches-are-up-50-in-the-last-six-months-charts/


2. Grima, Joseph. Abril 2012. Domus. The Kickstarter Revolution. http://www.domusweb.it/content/domusweb/en/design/2012/04/25/the-kickstarter-revolution.html