The founder, who is known for lines of watches made with natural wood materials, recently launched a refined version of the flexible wooden bands that are compatible with Apple Watches and Fitbit Versas, called Bandly.
Bandly’s Kickstarter campaign launched on Tuesday and is already funded to more than twice Buffa’s modest goal of $2,500. Folks can pledge for up to four bands, which will begin shipping in January, Buffa said.
Analog Watch Co. is currently operating as Bandly’s parent company, although they are separate entities.
“Bandly is mostly a solo project of mine,” Buffa said.
But he is leveraging the Analog staff, which is currently two full-time and a few part-time employees, with some virtual assistants and agents in Asia, to oversee production and quality control. For now, Bandly is operating out of the East Passyunk office, from which the company will ship Bandly products in a few months.
While Analog customers are interested in natural products, Bandly is meant for those interested in bringing a bit of nature to the tech world.
“Technology plays such a pervasive role in our lives, and there’s a lot of research on the power of small interventions of nature,” Buffa said. “You see patients healing at a faster rate, or reduction and anxiety in office workers if there’s a poster of nature nearby. These have a small impact, but [Bandly is] an attempt to add a bit of humanness to a tech item.”
The patent for the flexible wood material was granted about two years ago, and Buffa has been working with it since to create the tech-compatible bands. He said he’s been tweaking the production to get a soft but strong material, because when paired with the Apple Watches or Fitbits, the material must be durable.
Analog has some walk-in hours or shopping by appointment at its South Philly storefront, but most sales are made online.-30-