A local entrepreneur recently revealed a new iPad case that expands wireless networking capabilities. The case, called FiiV, functions as a battery backup and enables users to insert a prepaid data SIM card to establish a WiFi hotspot.
"I came up with this concept back in 2010 after getting an iPod touch for a Christmas gift," says FiiV founder Nathan Ellis. "And much like an iPad, it doesn't really work [to its full functionality] outside of a data connection or wireless network."
Ellis wanted to create a solution to purchasing multiple iPad accessories while maintaining the extra benefits, and also give customers the option to switch between wireless data carriers.
"The real value is the all-in-one solution. Customers are virtually spending around the same amount, if not less, than they would normally," Ellis says. Most folks don't actually get the choice once they get to a point where they don't like those data rates or terms. "
Other devices can also use FiiV's WiFi hotspots.
"[The WiFi network] is not just for the iPad connected to the actual case," Ellis says. "It also accommodates other devices as well: cell phones, laptops, other tablets that may be around. It also functions as battery backup."
Local design firm The Launch Werks
designed the case, which will be released by the brand Viaggi. Ellis plans to launch an indiegogo campaign November 2.
"The goal is to raise enough funds to go ahead and do an initial manufacturing run," Ellis says.
If all goes as planned, Viaggi will launch the first line of FiiV cases by May 2015. Currently, the retail price is set at $149, and the product will come in red, white and black, and also navy blue and brown during the campaign.
Enjoy this story? Sign up
for free solutions-based reporting in your inbox each week.