One of the greatest conveniences of living in 2014 is that our favorite music is available from basically anywhere. However, even with advances in technology, a 40% year-over-year rise in the sale of vinyl records indicates that many people still have a soft spot for physical records.
French-founded QLEEK, hopes to capitalize on this nostalgia by offering small, wooden hexagons that double as digital libraries. Funded through a successful Indiegogo campaign, the blocks, which are known as “Tapps”, allows users to input music, photos, and videos and to play them on a specially-designed media-player. Those who order QLEEKs receive Tapps, a media-player, and a connector-cable that can be plugged into your computer. They allow users to then program Tapps by putting them on the player and then adding content on your computer. In a sense, they function as more-attractive and practical USB drives.
Probably one of the coolest aspects of this project is that the blocks can double as artwork when you are not using it. This startup is offering “The Hive”, which basically acts as a wall-mount allows people to make artwork out of the Tapps that they purchase.
Another attractive aspect is the simplicity of it. The buttons for controlling playback are located on the media-player and it is designed so that files begin to play immediately after you drop-in the Tapp.
Those who donated through Indiegogo get 5 tapps for $249, while those who wait until it goes on sale to the general public will pay $349 (with extra for shipping). As the campaign has successfully achieved its goal, we know that they will at least obtain their funding. They report approximately 500 orders to this point and CTO Pierre-rudolf Gerlach tells me that they are looking to ship in December.