First suite of 3D-printed personalised products to address the physical needs of two billion global gamers
UNYQ’s personalised 3D-printed production concept drives the future of ergonomics
San Francisco, 4 June 2019:
UNYQ is pleased to announce the launch of three new personalised products for the global gaming community in collaboration with the Swedish furniture giant IKEA. The products are part of IKEA and UNYQ’s broader collection titled UPPKOPPLA, meaning ‘online’, and will comprise a series of products to improve the gaming experience and surrounding life at home. UNYQ unveiled these new products today at IKEA’s annual Democratic Design Day in Älmhult, southern Sweden.
There are an estimated 2.2 billion gamers around the world playing for a total of 14 billion hours per week. Gamers spend a large portion of their time online, sitting for hours on end, which can lead to massive physical strain on the body. Drawing on the expertise and input of Area Academy, an educational e-sport company with a thorough understanding of the unique wants and needs of gamers, UNYQ and IKEA identified an opportunity to create products which are not only functional, customised and design driven, but also offer ergonomic benefits.
The gaming-focused line will initially include three personalised products:
- A biometric wrist support which maintains the correct height of the gamers’ wrist to the keyboard, reducing strain on their tendons;
- Soft pliable, vented keycaps which make the keyboard feel like a physical extension of a gamers’ fingers; and
- A portable mouse “bungee” which clamps the users’ mouse cable in place, preventing tangling and enabling full freedom of movement.
While the collaboration is initially focused on the gaming community, the two companies see the opportunity to leverage this concept across a range of sectors, tapping into other underserved communities, with varying interests, unique preferences and specific needs.
The 3D printing technology behind the production of these products were led by Carbon, a digital manufacturing company based in California.
Eythor Bender, Co-Founder and CEO of UNYQ, said:
“We are thrilled to launch this new product line in collaboration with IKEA and Area Academy. The gaming community has been overlooked for a long time when it comes to furniture and accessories that are functional and customised, as well as aesthetically suit individuals’ preferences. We have the ability to address the unique needs of these individuals and, in turn, personalise, protect and improve their game. Additionally, the generative design and additive manufacturing process simplifies and shortens value and supply chains, making it easily-replicable across different products, more affordable and allowing individuals to partake in the design process.
“It has been a great experience to collaborate with IKEA over the past year – both companies are committed to creating products for the underserved that are practical, accessible and design focused, and truly reflect ‘democratic design’. We look forward to continuing to work together and leveraging the concept of mass customisation across a range of markets, tapping into other underserved communities where needs are currently unmet.”
Michael Nikolic, Creative Leader at IKEA of Sweden, said:
“This is an exciting partnership for IKEA. UNYQ has developed a method of creating solutions that fit everyone’s unique needs and tastes, letting customers take design into their own hands. It is a great way to give customers exactly what they want, and it also minimises waste as production is directly aligned with demand and there is no inventory. We are really looking forward to see where this new way of working will take us and are excited to continue to collaborate with UNYQ.”
The new UPPKOPPLA collection will be available to order via a smartphone app globally in 2020. Once launched, gamers can use UNYQ’s market leading photogrammetry, enabled by the user’s phone camera, to create personalised and customised versions of the gaming accessories, which are then delivered directly to their home within weeks.