The Chumby line of products are internet-connected touchscreen displays which you can use as a smart alarm clock, internet radio, weather forecast device, or more. But the company that makes Chumby closed up shop in 2013 which left existing Chumby users with limited functionality — their devices have basically been clock radios with internet access for the last year.
Now Chumby’s Duane Maxwell is bringing back the Chumby service, which means users can access a library of over a thousand apps.
You’ll need to pay a $3 per month subscription to use the full set of apps — the new owner known as Blue Octy is a much smaller company than the former Chumby Industries and has no venture capital or other way to help fund the service without charging a subscription.
You can still buy a new Chumby device… but if you’re in the market for an internet-connected device to put on your nightstand you might be better off buying a cheap Android tablet and leaving it plugged in all the time.
Still, this is good news for existing Chumby users looking to revive their devices. Chumby was an early player in the connected-devices space, long before tablets and smartphones became common and it’s nice to see the little gadgets still have some life left.