Qudi Launches a Kickstarter Campaign with a New Product

June 21, 2024

Qudi offers a mask with built-in sensors that react to human voice and movements. In 2019, when Mykhailo Chumachenko was just 15 years old, he introduced the product at the Startup Competition, making him the youngest participant in the 11-year history of IT Arena. This year, the company has developed an updated version, Qudi Mask 2, and launched a crowdfunding campaign. 

The original Qudi Mask 1 could open its mouth, nod, shake its head, and blink its eyes through built-in motion. A special app allowed users to display various animations like color blinking, rainbows, stripes, or flashing hearts on the mask’s surface.

In 2020, the Qudi team attended Web Summit, presenting their product at Surf Pitch Night – a conference showcasing Ukrainian startups to the local community.

Mask 2 vs. Mask 1

Polina Luhovykh, co-founder and CMO of the company, says: “Mask 1 is our legacy. Mask 1 walked so Mask 2 could run. Through our experience with Mask 1, we realized that everyone wants to be unique. That’s why we invested in customization when developing our new product.”

For Mask 2, the team developed a unique algorithm and hardware that allows each mask to be customized to the maximum extent, unlocking its full potential. The new eye pattern enables the creation of thousands of unique faces, while a wide selection of cases can transform the mask into a cat or an alien in seconds, offering new faces for the characters.

Qudi Mask 2 comes in three models, each inspired by different pop culture backgrounds:

  • Robot: The next generation of the original Qudi Mask, featuring a classic style and universal design.
  • Kawaii: Inspired by Eastern pop culture, including comics, anime, and cosplay. Its bright colors remind us of neon signs on the streets of Tokyo.
  • XX: Embraces nightlife and underground culture with a design reminiscent of graffiti and eyes that recall neon club lighting.

The mask’s audience is diverse, ranging from DJs to individuals seeking relief from social pressure and improved communication. With this in mind, the company developed a mask that allows everyone to express themselves boldly and comfortably.

On future plans

The developers created the first Mask 2 prototype in April 2024. In May, they launched a Kickstarter fundraiser and listed their product on Product Hunt. “After launching the Kickstarter campaign, we received great support from our community and customers. Pre-orders started within the first few seconds, and Qudi Mask 2 reached its fundraising target of $10,000 in less than a week. It is incredibly gratifying that dozens of people were waiting for the release of Mask 2 along with us,” Polina shares.

The fundraising is still ongoing. The team plans to complete the development of Mask 2 over the summer and produce the first 1,000 masks between September and October. In November, they will conduct final tests and prepare for pre-shipment. In December, masks will be shipped to Super Early and Early Bird buyers, with all other customers receiving their masks in January 2025.