Lucky 13 – Concept Test Results for Prototype I: Battery Assisted Grabber

Are you interested in this product?

  • Everyone said yes they could use the grabber in some way.
  • There weren’t any negative comments to this question.

What do you like most about the grabber?

  • 2 people talked about how they liked having rubber coated clinchers rather than hard plastic.
  • The most liked feature of an ideal grabber was telescoping

What do you like least about the grabber?

  • Grabbers that could hinge or fold up like the gopher got stuck
  • Wanted to be able to control how much force was put into the clinchers

Are there other features that you’d like to see incorporated?

  • 3 people talked about adding a magnet to the end
  • 1 person talked about making the clinchers able to rotate
  • Make the clinchers wider
  • Be able to attach it to a chair
  • Be able to change the clincher attachments for different tasks

Should anything be eliminated?

  • Due to the lack of features of our prototype no one could give a good answer to this question

How often do you think you would use the grabber?

  • 5 people said many times a day
  • 1 person said 2-3 times a week
  • 1 person said everyday

Do you own something like this already? If so are you satisfied with it?

  • There were only two people we talked to that didn’t own a grabber
  • No one that owned a grabber was completely satisfied with how it functioned

Would you consider purchasing the grabber? If so, how much would you pay?

  • 1 person said $50
  • 1 person said $20 if it was durable
  • 1 person said $25 if it could telescope
  • 2 people said $40-$50 if it could telescope
  • 3 people said $150-$200 if it could mount a camera in place to take pictures (since other camera mounts were in the magnitude of a thousand dollars)

What types of things do you need to pick up during a normal day?

  • Answers included: shampoo, clothes, phone, fork, pills, paper, pins, glasses

What is an example of the heaviest item you are comfortable picking up?

  • Answers included a Gallon of milk, Bleach or laundry detergent, laundry basket, 3 liter of pop

How far way would like to able to reach?

  • 3 people said to the top shelf of a cabinet (roughly 7ft off the ground)

Would you like this type of device to be something that attaches or anchors to your chair?

  • Everyone said yes
  • 3 people specifically mentioned only if it was detachable

Or would you rather it be held in your own grip?

  • Anyone who was asked this question always said it would be better if it was detachable from a chair

How much dexterity would you like to have? Ex: is it enough to pick up a shirt or a bottle or do you wan to be able to pick up a pencil, a piece of paper, or other small objects?

  • Everyone that owned a grabber talked about how frustrating it was when they re-dropped small objects over and over using a grabber

How much do you car about the aesthetic appeal of the device?

  • We didn’t ask every person this question, because it didn’t seem to be important.
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Lauren Smith
October 9th, 2012 2:38 pm

It seems that I somehow neglected to post my summary… It’s been a very stressful couple of weeks for me. I apologize for any and all inconveniences I may have caused. These points are rather redundant but I’m still posting in the event that there might be a few helpful reminders buried in there somewhere!

CPRF Interview #1

Product Interest

The majority of people that we interviewed already own or have owned a traditional “grabber”. To no one’s surprise, there were many complaints in regards to the design and reliability of those products.

The following are some of the most universal of those complaints:
- Poor build quality (break or jam easily, go out of alignment)
- Lack of fine motor control (ex – very difficult to pick up a dropped pill)
- Reach (not long enough to reach items)

Some features found in traditional grabbers that interviewees felt were beneficial:
- Magnets (many had magnets in the tip, although they tended to fall out easily)
- Hook (a small hook on the far end of the grabber to help pick up clothes, pull cords, etc)

In general those interviewed were at least somewhat interested in our product. When shown the first prototype, there were a number of features that really appealed to the residents:
- Stability (we discussed the option of anchoring the device to the user’s chair)
- Telescoping (an extremely well received idea!)
- Battery-powered (the automation eliminating the need to grip a trigger)

Some concerns:
- Latex sensitivity (apparently a relatively common problem among residents)
- Weight (current grabbers are light weight, ours adds a battery and a motor)
- Size (first prototype’s motor was obviously a bit cumbersome)
- Design of grabbing apparatus (the pinchers with the rubber are not terribly effective)

Additional features to consider:
- Different attachments (one for picking up small items, one that’s magnetic, etc)
- Easy to anchor to chair (being able to take it off and move it around)

What is the potential customer most concerned with picking up?
- Phones (cell phones were one of the first things mentioned by residents)
- Utensils such as silverware, pens, pencils, etc.
- Clothing or cloth items
- Papers (which could be extremely frustrating to get)
- Things that have rolled off or dropped onto the floor like pills, other small items
- Many also use their grabber for manipulation of things like the cord on blinds, switches

The heaviest items that the interviewees thought they might have to pick up were gallons of milk or tea or juice, bleach or laundry detergent in jugs or buckets, ingredients like flour and sugar.

The residents seemed to be less concerned about picking up and maneuvering heavy objects than about reaching objects on high shelves. Even lighter items are very difficult to handle when the individual’s center of gravity is thrown off or they must move their arms in difficult ways. Residents were also concerned about the risk of falling out of their chairs when bending over to reach items.

The above issues would be aided by some manner of anchoring the device to the user’s chair which would take the stress off of the operator themselves. It is important that the grabber arm is able to be adjusted to better approach and manipulate a variety of objects.

As expected, it was difficult to determine a price range for our potential product. Some indicated that they would only consider as little as $20-30 for a battery-powered device ($30-40 if there was a telescoping function), some fell more in the $50 range, while the woman who originally inspired the idea for this product told us that she would consider $200-300 for a fully operational, durable device. She said that wheelchair attachments in this same vein can cost thousands of dollars so a couple hundred could be reasonable. Regardless I think there would be more flexibility if a payment plan were available to spread out the cost.

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