A Handy Update
Hi all, Alexander the CTO of Handy here. I wanted to give you all a Handy update on what we been doing the last months and what is going to happen the next months.
Handy sales have been increasing the last two months. This could not be done without the help, reviews and post you guys have made. So, thanks a lot for that! We are a small startup and need all the help we can get to grow further.
There have been a lot of cool new reviews out there during the summer months. It’s is extremely motivating for everyone in the Handy team to read that our product is that well received in the market.
A lot of our attention the last months have gone to scaling the business, and we are trying to attract smart people to help us evolve the tech, create new stuff, spread the word and grow. This process is a little slow, but hopefully our development will speed up by a lot when our engineering department gets bigger and the new hires are up to speed. Currently we are 4 engineers, but we hope to at least double this during 2020.
We have had 3 main focus areas this summer:
- Server stability
- Companion app for simpler Wi-Fi setup
- Band improvement
The server stability
We have done some changes to the current system during the summer and the server system seems a lot more stable. We have built a completely new server architecture from scratch, but there is still some final testing before we can make the switch. The new architecture will lower latency and be ready for the tens of thousands of new Handys that will go online the next months.
The current wifi setup is not the simplest one. When everything works smooth it is quite nice, but most of the feedback is that we need to change this process. We are creating a companion app for iOS and Android that uses Bluetooth to provision the Wi-Fi credentials to Handy and to see/change the Connection Key. To enable BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) on Handy was a much bigger task than we initially thought due to the extremely high RAM usage of the BLE stack. BLE is now enabled in our new 3.X FW (I will describe that in more detail later). The actual app development is started and the app is due in end of October (if everything goes according to plan).
We got some complaints about our band solution. We have now changed it to a thicker high-quality material. The band is washable, and the sewing is improved to improve the overall experience. This new band is now the default band when you buy a Handy. It will be possible to buy the band separately as well.
We will also release an extra band that is a little longer, which makes it better to use with bigger sleeves. Both bands will be in stock and possible to buy in September.
A Handy update: Other things that we are working on
There are a lot of requests for us to develop new hardware. When we develop physical items we usually design and create prototypes in Norway, then we go to China to meet all the necessary experts in various fields, discuss and make plans for manufacturing. Sadly, the covid-19 situation has put a blocker to our travel plans and all new HW development have been postponed. Hopefully, we can get to China in October to resume all our projects.
We are creating some new sleeves now. It looks like there will be 3 open ended sleeves with different tightness. Some more testing and feedback needed before we can start the manufacturing. ETA in stores is September/October. The overall look will be the same, but they will have different sensations based on the majority feedback we received from all of you.
We want to create a lot of sleeves going forward and hopefully the sleeve development process can speed up a little.
1.0.0 API draft have been a huge success. A lot of cool apps have been created. The final documentation will be updated this week and 1.0.0 will be officially released. The endpoints will be the same, but the documentation will be better.
We are building the firmware from scratch. We have worked on this for 6 months, making the FW more secure, modular, and flexible. The 3.X FW uses BLE instead of local AP for Wi-Fi setup and have some cool new features like that streaming protocols. In the next weeks we are opening up for our pro users to switch between 2.X (current FW) and the new 3.X FW. More on this later.
I will try to post regularly on our progress going forward.
Please continue to provide feedback, support, and love.
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