Bring out your inner inventor with Quirky’s iPhone app

Sep 28, 2011
Tech

Website Quirky.com allows the average Joe and Jane to submit, and collaborate upon, ideas for new inventions that are then brought to fruition by Quirky’s development team. But don’t think you’ll be giving up your bright ideas for nothin’. As you provide influence and input on a product, you’ll share in its success — monetarily, […]

Website Quirky.com allows the average Joe and Jane to submit, and collaborate upon, ideas for new inventions that are then brought to fruition by Quirky’s development team. But don’t think you’ll be giving up your bright ideas for nothin’. As you provide influence and input on a product, you’ll share in its success — monetarily, that is. The app version of the site, Quirky, for iPhone and iPod Touch, isn’t as useful as the website itself, but it will allow you to stay on top of voting for products of the week as well as items under development.

To use Quirky, you’ll need to create an account, which will also work on Quirky.com. Quirky launches two products into development each week, and you’ll be able to vote on these via the app’s influence section. You can also participate in a product discussion or ask for more information through the comment function.

You can also use Quirky to submit an invention idea of your own. The cost is $10 per idea — the same cost as the website — unless the idea fits the weekly project theme, in which case it’ll be free. The app supports text descriptions, photo uploads or sketches that can be drawn in-app with your finger.

Users can also participate in the development process, once ideas are voted through, by selecting from presented options for design and branding, or answering research questions. This all lends itself well to app format, although I found that many of the ideas in development were missing vital information (such as the entire proposal, in one case). I think it’s pretty difficult to determine what an item should look like or how to usually answer a research question without a complete background.

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The Quirky app, unfortunately, doesn’t offer access to the site’s store that features items previously ushered through the process. The app also limits the ideas you’ll have access too. The “latest activity” section is a feed of just that, but nothing inside is tappable, which means that no, you will not be able to view more information on untangling ear buds or watch video of the Miracle Bib. Honestly, I’m not sure why this section even exists.

Quirky’s process is an interesting one, and its existing catalog of products is worth shopping. Inventors on the go should find use for the Quirky app, but everyone else is better off sticking with the website’s more-featured offerings.

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