how to get a product developed

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841
So me and my band think we came up with this cool idea for in ear monitors. Similar to the Aviom system (if you unfortunatley have had the honor of using that system), but it would be way better in sound, controllability, and ease of use.

We just started to lay the idea out. For the record none of us know ANYTHING about designing a digital audio product. My extent of audio knowledge is building a pedal kit. But we have the general idea for what pieces of hardware would need to be used.

Just wondering if anyone around the forum knew how to get a product developed. Because we know nothing i'd imagine we would need to pitch it to major audio companies. Were not trying to make some huge $$$$ off of this, i think we're more interested in getting the idea made.

I dont really know if you can get it a patent for the idea we have. But we would like to take some sort of legal ownership on the idea.

Just wondering if anyone could help? Im sorry if what i say makes no sense.

Thanks
Daniel
 

Chiba

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
8,124
Start with a lawyer well versed in intellectual property law.

--chiba
 

cob666

Member
Messages
3,156
First, I'm not sure I would buy an audio product designed by people that know nothing about audio but that's kind of off topic.

You need to make sure your product is protected before you start pitching it to major companies. If the product is not patentable then be prepared to have your idea stolen after you pitch it somewhere.

I know a few people that have been in a similar position you are in and they all did some prototyping and proof of concept design work. Having a functional prototype goes a long way toward having somebody else 'get' what you're trying to do. One guy was even able to have his product manufactured in China and sold them in stores like Lowes and Home Depot. His product was eventually purchased by a bigger company that probably never would have given him the time of day if he hadn't done all the legwork in getting functional units in the store and having some kind of sales history.

Good luck.
 

tiktok

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
24,748
Well, the first thing you want to do is describe, in detail, a really good idea with the potential for huge profit on a public internet forum. In about six months, someone will put it into production at no cost to you.
 

hubbstar

Member
Messages
124
I wouldn't start with a lawyer. Ideas are pretty worthless most of the time. Execution is what creates value. First, I would write out a simple one-page document that outlines the key problems you're trying to solve and explains why your mousetrap is the best. You said it will be way better in terms of blah blah blah. Get specific. Writing helps clarify your value proposition, and you'll need clarity as you move into prototyping. It saves time & money.

Once you have a clear vision for what you want to create and the problems you want to solve, time to start creating a functional prototype. It sounds like you don't have the necessary expertise to do this, so you need to find a person or shop who can help. Depending on the complexity, an EE major at a local college might be able to help for nominal compensation. Going with a shop will cost you a lot more money, but it will probably be faster and better.

Once you have a functional prototype, use it. See if it's really better. Does it solve the problems you outlined above? How could it be better? Iterate. Wash, rinse, repeat until you have something you think is marketable.

Now, you need to decide if you want to start a business or try selling to an established company. If you want to start your own business, you need to find someone with expertise in design for manufacturing who can take your probably-ugly functional prototype and design it specifically for mass production. You'll probably need to raise some money at this point for a small production run. If it's cool enough, you may be able to put it on Kickstarter and see if it flies.

If you want to try selling to a company, go visit a good IP lawyer and see if your functional prototype has anything that can be patented. If it's not defensible, you're probably out of luck moving forward with this plan. If it is, apply for a patent. Then, work on your pitch and try to get meetings with potential acquirers.

I'm going out on a limb and guessing your use case has something to do with playing in church? If not, skip the rest of this paragraph. You'd benefit from some market research on the size of your addressable market. Estimated number of churches who could use your product and currently do not have an IEM solution (probably the most interesting target market)? Estimated number of churches who do already have an IEM solution? If a church has already committed many thousands of dollars to an Aviom setup, good luck getting them to buy your product. You'd have to have some amazing innovation on top of existing functionality for that to even be palatable. Keep in mind that the majority of people who hate Avioms are not your target customers. They are the users, but someone else is making the purchase decision.

I could go on and on, but that's roughly how I'd approach it.
 
Messages
841
thanks for the answers.

When i say we know nothing about developing a digital audio product, I mean we dont know how to physically build the hardware. But we know what sort of things that piece of hard would require internally to function.

Yeah once we fully draw out are idea we will consult a lawyer.
 
Messages
841
been reading more of the posts. And yes, this band I am playing with is a "chritian" band (if you will....). But we tour, and this solution for in ear monitors would work with any touring band with in-ears that doesn't have a monitor guy all the time (I know this because i play music outside of that genre as well). The idea will market to everyone imo. I wouldn't even bother with the idea if it was just a product designed for a limited market, such as a house of worship or whatnot.


I know for a fact everyone could easily use this and it would sound way better than any self controlled monitor solution yet.



Thanks for all the help guys.
 

bayside

Member
Messages
101
I would start with a Patient Attorney. Not for legal service, but for people in the product development world in your area. Other inventors with special expertise in many areas.
They hang with these types for a living. What you need is someone to spec parts and a design a circuit. Once you've built one then you can worry about who's toes your stepping on.
 




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