It’s been just over a week since Andromium launched a Kickstarter campaign in hopes of raising $50,000 to produce a device that lets you use an Android smartphone like a laptop.
With 21 days left to go in the Superbook campaign, the project has received over $1.1 million in pledges, which means that it’s hit a few key stretch goals. The team is adding an extra USB port and a bigger battery. And backers willing to pay $30 extra for the option can now get a higher-quality, higher-resolution display.
The Superbook looks like a laptop, but it’s really just the shell of a notebook computer. It has a screen, keyboard, and battery. But it doesn’t have a processor, memory, storage, or operating system: all of those things are supplied by your phone when you connect it to the Superbook with a USB cable.
While Android isn’t really optimized for desktop-style computing, Andromium offers a free app that you can load on phones running Android 5.0 or later to give the operating system a taskbar and support for multi-window mode.
Andromium is asking for $99 for a basic model with an 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixel TN display with limited viewing angles. But now folks can pledge $129 or more (or amend existing pledges) to get a model with a 1920 x 1080 pixel IPS display with 178-degree viewing angles.
So what’s next on the stretch goal list? If the project hits $1.5 million, Andromium will throw in a free sleeve for everyone who orders a Superbook through Kickstarter.
And if the project hits $2 million, there will be an optional backlit keyboard.
Initially Andromium noted that the plan was to combine all the latest stretch goals at the time the campaign closes, which means that a $99 pledge would get you an entry-level model, while a $154 pledge would get you the backlit keyboard and 1080p display… but that there’d be no $129 option anymore if the project raises $2 million. Kickstarter commenters don’t seem too keen on that proposal though, so Andromium is trying to come up with another way to offer a $2 million stretch goal that makes backers happy and doesn’t end up breaking the bank.
Update: After considering feedback from backers, Andromium has decided to push back the backlit keyboard stretch goal to the $2.5 million mark. That will allow the team to offer three options:
- Superbook for $99
- Superbook w/1080p display for $129
- Superbook w/1080p display + backlit keyboard for $154
The first Superbook devices are expected to ship to backers of the campaign in January, 2017.
Update 2: Check out LPX Show episode 12 for an interview with Andromium CEO Andrew Jiang: