21 Dec DECEMBER UPDATE
Hey guys! We hope your holidays are going great so far!
We wanted to fill you in on the tremendous progress we’ve made since the end of our Kickstarter campaign. We’ve been working very hard since the middle of October and the past few weeks have been especially busy; a lot of long nights and organization to make sure we’re putting together the best product we can. All of this while coordinating across multiple time zones and languages. There hasn’t been a lot of time for much else, including our Kickstarter and social media presence.
This update will cover a lot! We’ll go over everything we’ve done so far and cover our timeline for the future. From here on out, we’ll post weekly updates on all our progress!
THE SALT CARD
We’ve shown you the initial prototypes of the circuit board and batteries but we’ve come a long way since then! We’ve adjusted both the circuit board and final card enclosure to make the cards function well and look awesome! Here is the prototype circuit board that we decided on:
This image is a picture of the prototype card that came right before the final version:
The prototype version had its shortcomings in terms of design and use. For example, we didn’t like the blue border around the card or the bubble on the front surface. In terms of functionality, putting it into a wallet and then into a pair of jeans could bend the card just enough to make it useless. We revisited our design and made all the necessary adjustments. Here is the final version of the SALT Card with great range and functionality:
By the way, the original image on our Kickstarter page of the hand holding the card is a mock-up of our initial design idea. This image is an actual image with the actual SALT Card!
Just for comparison, here is the prototype next to the final version of the card:
PRODUCTION AND TESTING
The SALT Cards are now in production and have passed both FCC and CE testing. These tests are meant to prove that the card operates within strict guidelines and won’t interfere with other devices. They’re both required in order to sell a product in the United States and European Union, respectively.
Along with these certifications, we’re also in the process of getting our Bluetooth Qualification approved so that we can use the Bluetooth trademarks for the SALT Card. This is another series of tests that confirm that the SALT Card works with other Bluetooth devices in the way that it’s intended to. It guarantees that you won’t experience any issues between the SALT Card and any other Bluetooth device. This is another certification that’s required in order to sell and ship the SALT Card.
Our goal is to create a product that will take some of the hassle out of using a mobile phone but we want to make sure that the product we’re sending meets our very strict level of quality. We believe it’s better to get a product that’s solid in terms of design and functionality than to receive a rushed product that doesn’t meet anyone’s expectations.
That being said, we’ve tried everything we could to get the SALT Cards in our hands by the end of this year so that we can get them out to our backers. Unfortunately, due to the extensive testing and minor revisions that the SALT card has gone through, our manufacturer won’t be able to meet that deadline. While we would have loved to speed up the process and meet our initial deadline, the target ship date has been adjusted by only a few weeks.
We’ll continue to work tirelessly until we get the cards delivered but we’ve had to update our timeline to reflect this change. We’ll be posting a new timeline in the next few days but we’re anticipating shipping the SALT Cards by January 23rd of 2015. This date is more concrete since the SALT Cards are already in production and we can get an accurate timeline based on the manufacturing process. We’ll be providing weekly updates so that everyone can stay involved in the process!
THE SALT APP
We’ve wrapped up the majority of the app at this point and now we’re working through some of the details that will make the app even easier to use. We wanted to run through the features in this video:
We’re very happy with how the app functions and are continuing to improve some small details. One thing we’re really excited about is that the SALT App will work with encrypted phones that require a PIN for access. This covers versions of Android prior to 5.0 Lollipop where this was the main method to secure your information. The SALT App allows you to bypass the PIN entry screen, which is something that was impossible before.
We couldn’t be more excited to announce that the iOS SALT app will be available to our backers without requiring a jail-broken iPhone. We worked really hard on this particular app and spent many long nights debugging and trying to find a valid solution that follows Apple’s extremely strict guidelines. We’ll cover more on how we were able to get the app to work on iOS devices in the next update but here is a quick video of it functioning:
In preparation of shipping the SALT Cards, we’ve designed and proofed the packaging that you’ll receive your SALT Card in. It will come in the mail in a SALT envelope with simple setup instructions printed on a folded card. As you can see from the instructions, it’ll be super easy to setup your SALT Card:
We’ve done some analysis and decided that the retail price of the SALT Card will be $20 per card. This means that the early bird backers got a 50% discount and the $15 per card backers received a 25% discount! Don’t worry, we’ll have some promotions available for just our backers in the future!
From this point forward, we’ll be posting an update every week. Some will be short and some will have a little more information but we want to keep all our backers involved throughout the entire process.
We’d like to thank everyone for your continuing support and understanding. You’ve been there to support us from the moment we launched our Kickstarter campaign and have provided a ton of great advice and feedback. Some of the suggestions have even been incorporated into the initial version of SALT. That’s really what makes the entire Kickstarter experience unique!
We’re working as hard as we can to deliver a product that exceeds even our own expectations. The next few weeks, like the previous couple of months, will call for a lot of work but we’re up for it and will continue to make huge steps forward. We’ll keep you well updated throughout the process!
Thank you again,
– Nikola Zistakis and Joel Paglione