Call it a “back to the future” moment: hardware is hot.
After years of private tech investors favoring software startups, new hardware companies are attracting keen attention. Witness Wednesday’s $30 million investment in Webcam startup DropCam. Software still gets more buzz — and yes, more money — but in the last couple of years, more than $711 million was poured into hardware startups, according to a recent blog post by Renee Di DiResta, a principal at O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures.
It’s an uptick that correlates with the rise in smartphones, according to investors who say recent hits like Dropcam, Nest and Fitbit are just the tip of the iceberg.
“You have more and more people with computing and engineered devices in their pockets and on the go,” said Menlo Ventures Principal Sunil Raman, who sees the start of a tipping point for hardware. “It’s become a lot more interesting for hardware.”
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
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