How Axis went from concept to shipping its Gear smart blinds hardware

Axis is selling its first product, the Axis Gear, on Amazon and direct from its own website, but that’s a relatively recent development for the four-year-old company. The idea for Gear, which is a $249.00 ($179.00 as of this writing thanks to a sale) aftermarket conversion gadget to turn almost any cord-pull blinds into automated smart blinds, actually came to co-founder and CEO Trung Pham in 2014, but development didn’t begin until early the next year, and the maxim that “hardware is hard” once again proved more than valid.

Pham, whose background is actually in business but who always had a penchant for tech and gadgets, originally set out to scratch his own itch and arrived upon the idea for his company as a result. He was actually in the market for smart blades when he moved into his first condo in Toronto, but after all the budget got eaten up on essentials like a couch, a bed and a TV, there wasn’t much left in the bank for luxuries like smart shades – especially after he actually found out how much they cost.

“Even though I was a techie, and I wanted automated shades, I couldn’t afford it,” Pham

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