Pushing a tactile button is the most satisfying and straightforward way to send a command, according to the inventors of Flic - the smart button. And they are not alone in liking buttons. The Kickstarter for Flic 2 ran this summer and gained over USD 630,000 in pre-orders.
A majority of backers ordered Flic 2 together with the new Flic Hub LR, for use in smart home applications. The most common things to control are connected lights such as LIFX, Philips Hue, and online sound systems such as SONOS. Still, the Hub has a wide range of integrations.
"Most of our customers have smart assistants in their homes, like Alexa or Google Home. They buy Flic so they can control their connected home devices with a button as well as with voice commands. Pushing is just easier and quicker than talking," says founder Amir Sharifat.
A Flic Hub LR connects Flic 2 buttons with other devices and practically anything on the internet. One Hub can cater to over 60 different buttons, and the range between buttons and Hub covers every corner of a large villa, with the help of Bluetooth Long Range. And it's fast.
"Pushing a Flic 2 button paired with the Flic Hub LR gets practically as fast as using a wired light switch," says Joacim Westlund Prändel, founder and CEO.
Flic 2 is not only geared for home use. The first generation of Flic buttons has found a wide range of use cases among the company's many business customers. Flic buttons are used in fishing equipment from Abu Garcia, in personal alarm solutions for Bosch, in hotel conference rooms, and much more. Flic 2 makes business use cases better by having an exchangeable multi-year battery, a rigid metal clip for wearing, light feedback, an open ecosystem of applications, and many more improvements.
"Unlike anything on the market, Flic 2 can talk to smartphones, tablets, or computers directly, so any app or business system can add smart buttons to their services." Says Westlund Prändel.
Flic 2 also introduces the two new communication modes, HID and MIDI, which makes the buttons act like Bluetooth keyboards or music instruments.
Shortcut Labs, the Sweden-based startup behind the buttons, had a revenue of around $2M last year.
"2019, we will be profitable for the first time," says Daniel Abdiu, COO. "We grew organically every year since 2015 and spent much on product development end establishing smart buttons as a concept. Next year we will see new competitors and a growing market understanding. With Flic 2 and our unique software solutions that make it safe, stable, and quick, we will be able to maintain our market lead."
The new products Flic 2 and the Flic Hub LR have a long list of backorders, but the production is at full speed. A starting package with a Hub and three buttons will be available for $190 when they are released in retail next year.
Flic is a Swedish tech company behind the world’s smartest button with products including Flic, Powered by Flic and Flic Hub. With simplicity at its heart, Flic, is creating a single, trusted communication point between people and the services they love.