This is Part 2 of a series. Read Part 1 of The Primo Toys Story.
Our idea was simple, clear, and easy to communicate.
Cubetto allows girls and boys, aged 3 and up, to program a friendly wooden robot using a programming language they can touch, instead of a screen.
When we met in 2013, my co-founder Matteo had designed a block-based coding language that controlled an RC (remote-controlled) car, but it wasn’t a toy yet. The concept was raw, incomplete. But the germ was there.
So we got to work. First we replaced the car with Cubetto, a wooden robot, based on two principles, equally appealing to girls and boys anywhere in the world: 1) A cube, and 2) A smile.
We quickly released a prototype through a successful 2013 Kickstarter campaign, which didn’t raise a lot, but enough to keep us moving and build a community around us.
Iteration after iteration, we improved our hardware. We eventually designed for scale, without losing quality, refining our features and functionality.
In 2016, we eventually released a new and improved Cubetto, through what became the most crowdfunded ed-tech invention in Kickstarter’s history.
We even won a handful of awards, beating Lego for some! Amongst them, a Best of the Best Red Dot Design Award, a Gold Cannes Lion Award. In the photo below, that’s me and my co-founder Valeria (in the centre), collecting our Gold Lion in Cannes in 2016.
Humble Cubetto became a little piece of design history, appreciated the world over, but most interesting of all is what Cubetto accomplished in education.
In my next post I’ll share a few secrets on how Cubetto became a standard in early years STEM programmes across 96 countries and counting.