In just over eight hours, game console-maker Ouya not only beat its Kickstarter goal, but also blew past all previous fundraising records on the site.
Ouya set its initial goal at $950,000 but soon became the the 8th project on the site to surpass $1 million. The project reached the milestone 19 hours faster than the most previous record-setter Pebble, the e-paper watch for iPhone and Android. In fact, over a 24-hour period, the 3-month old Los Angles-based gaming company has raised more than $3 million... and it hasn't stopped there.
The Android-based game console is aiming to give Nintendo and Microsoft a run for their money by making video games less expensive to make and to buy. Ouya claims it will be made "by developers, for developers," meaning amateur game creators will be able to easily tap into the system and build new games, and consumers will get a number of free-to-play games. The funds raised on Kickstarter will allow Ouya to convert its model prototype into a production-ready console.
Yves Behar, founder of the design firm Fuseproject, has teamed with Ouya creator Julie Uhrman to design an affordable console (just $99 and equipped with RAM, flash storage, WiFi capability, bluetooth, and more), that Behar believes will change the way people play games.
“Differentiation has become key," Behar said of choosing teams to partner with at VenturBeat’s MobileBeat conference in San Francisco on Wednesday. “Every [entrepreneur] is struggling to find that unique voice.”
Behar said that Uhrman had that voice when she came to his office just months ago. Uhrman, who has worked at Vivendi Universal, IGN, and GameFly, presented Ouya to Behar with such conviction that he said he had to get on board.
According to the Kickstarter blog, 20,000 people in 24 hours had purchased the yet-to-be made Ouya console. By comparison, Microsoft sold 326,000 Xbox 360 consoles in one week following a multi-million dollar marketing campaign encouraging gamers to purchase the machine.
"We are blown away by your support. With your help, we just raised $2 million. And it’s only the first day," Uhrman wrote on Ouya’s Kickstarter page Wednesday morning.