So in the last few months I have developed a product that I know will become huge. There are several competitors but none have went commercial yet and are strictly inferior AND much more expensive. I just demoed the product to several professors of mine and they were all blown away. It's still an early prototype but very functional. This shit is the real deal and i'm sure you guys would agree but I don't want to spoil the idea. I'm pragmatic with all of this startup bullshit but this realm of an idea is inevitably going to become huge in the upcoming years.
Now I have several worries. The first is that I'm the team-lead of the group in the school and came up with the idea myself prior to the formation. I have also done ALL the technical work thus far, literally 100%. They have just helped with the setting up of the product for demo/monkey work.
I want to start a kickstarter or demo it to several companies but I don't want to split the spoils with my groupmates because they haven't done jack shit for the technical work (and aren't really that capable or motivated as me) and didn't come up with the idea. I just have them because I had to have group-mates for this capstone project (We are computer engineers in our last year and we all have to work on a big project).
My other concern is that once people see the clever tricks I use to make this idea work for so cheap and effective, they might take it themselves. It wouldn't take more than a few competent and motivated programmers to make an equivalent once they see how mine works (which isn't that hard once you see the product in action).
Does anyone have advice? Should I try and patent it? (Although it maybe a little too generalized? Not familiar with the constraints of producing a patent)
Should I contact the companies who I would see delivering this type of project, if so how should I contact them?
I know if I play my cards right this will succeed. I'm just terrified to fuck it up.
>I don't want to split the spoils with my groupmates
then leave them out of your initial phase of development. whether its kickstarter or pitching to a company. don't tell them you're doing anything, let them find out the hard way. the only thing you have to worry about is if your groupmates beat you in this initial phase. if what you think and say about your team is true, they won't have the willingness to take the steps you want to take, nor the knowledge to make a successful pitch
>they might take it themselves
this is inevitable, even if you have a patent. welcome to capitalism.
now you made me pretty interested anon.
When you make it big, dont forget to tell in your interviews that you were around here in your youth!
Anyway, if your groups pals arent indeed motivated, you probably wont have much problem there.
Just do your own thing by yourself.
I dont know what exactly the product is, but if you think its really big and important, you should study how other serious tech startups started, and find your own way to protect your intellectual property and profit on it big.
Sorry, I cant help you much more.
As the other anon said, even with a patent, there will always be at least some chink company ready to mimic your product.
You just have to be sure to have the best product and, more importantly, the best image and marketing
Assuming you don't have the capital to go into mass production, hiring and marketing, there's two ways to go - build a startup company or patent the thing and lease the patent to someone who can handle it.
I don't know much about that second option, but I do know the first quite well.
If you're looking to build a startup around this thing, you need a team. There is no getting around it. You did all the technical work, but someone needs to do customer development, marketing, design, accounting etc. You need at least two more people. You may think you're superman, but you're not. Unless you can afford to pay these people (and you probably can't) you need to sell them on the idea and give them a part of the company.
Then you need to pitch this to investors and take their money in exchange for a small part of the future profits. Don't give up more than 10% for your first investment.
Use the investment to get your first set of users. use the feedback from these users to improve the app before going after a bigger investment and a wider audience.
By that stage, you should be experienced enough to know what to do.