Outernet has picked a winning product design

For $1000 they received 91 design concepts from 13 designers!

  • Award 1
    Discovery  by nacke

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Starts:6-Apr-14 11:32 p.m. GMT

Ends:20-Apr-14 11:32 p.m. GMT


Award 1: $1000, was awarded to nacke


JPG, Vector EPS


Preview: crowdSPRING Contract


There are no materials for this project.

Creative brief

The buyer added updates to the brief. Read them.

Business Name


What do you do?

Outernet broadcasts the best content from the internet to the world--for free. By offering unencrypted broadcast data, Outernet is able to ensure privacy, bypass censorship, and offer a universally-accessible information service at no cost to global citizens. It's the modern version of shortwave radio, or BitTorrent from space.

Outernet will provide a basic level of news, information, and education to all of humanity.

What is the product designed to do?

This design contest is targeting a specific component of the Outernet satellite hotspot. The purpose of this contest is to uncover different concepts related to a portable satellite dish. The Outernet hotspot is being developed as a portable device which can be easily placed inside of a normal backpack.

Satellites dishes are usually bulky. The entries for this contest should outline ways for a satellite dish of roughly 1-meter (~3 feet) in diameter to be taken apart or folded into a much smaller package. The goal is for a satellite dish made of rigid materials to easily transform into shoebox-sized package.

List the size and weight requirement(s) for your product design

The satellite dish must begin with a diameter of 100 centimeters (~39 inches). This is a rigid satellite dish, similar to what is standard throughout the world. The focus of this design challenge is to describe a way to fold the dish or compose the dish from pieces that can be taken apart.

When the dish is either folded or deconstructed, it should be less than 20 centimeters ((8 inches) in any dimension.

Weight is not an issue.

List all other important design requirements

The most important design requirement is that the dish must be composed of a rigid material. There are several existing designs for foldable satellite dishes made of fabric, but these designs are not suitable for Outernet's use case.

Will this product need to be certified?

We are only looking for design concepts at this stage. There is no reason for the designer to consider any certifications.

What is your industry?


Describe the end users of your product design

Outernet is building a globally-accessible broadcast data service. We want every person in the world in every part of the world to access the broadcast. The end user is no different from the end user of a smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

What 3 things would you like to communicate to your audience through your product design?


What products will this new product compete with?

This is a new type of product. We are not aware of any competitors at this time.

What is your target retail price?

For the entire satellite hotspot, we are targeting a retail price of $100.

What product design styles do you like?

We appreciate modern designs with an emphasis on simplicity.

What colors do you want to see in your product design?

We leave color selection up to the discretion of the designers.

What colors do you NOT want to see in your product design?

We leave color selection up to the discretion of the designers.

What adjectives should best describe your product design?


Describe the operating environment for the product.

The device will operate in every environment under the sun; from the sands of the Sahara to the peaks of Mount Everest--and every place in between.

Do you have additional info or links you'd like to share?

This is a standard 1-meter satellite dish and should be used as a point of reference for this design.


A two-piece folding satellite dish.


This is a petalized (as in, flower petals) satellite dish.


Standard petalized dishes.


Portable military-grade satellite dishes.


This is a shallow-dish design with encased in a rectangular box.


This is a portable reflector antenna (dish) made from pieces of semi-rigid material.


The following folding, umbrella designs should only be viewed for design inspiration. As mentioned above, a flexible material is *not* suitable for the Outernet hotspot.

This is a very unique motorized design.


Brief updates

By Outernet on 7-Apr-14 12:34 p.m. GMT
Regarding dimensions: I forget to mention that the thickness of the dish will be about 2 centimeters. And the interior of the dish must maintain a smooth parabolic shape when fully expanded. The outside of the dish, however, can be whatever the designer chooses, as it has no effect on signal reception.

Also, when submitting concepts. it would be very much appreciated to show the final, folded/compacted version of the dish.
By Outernet on 8-Apr-14 6:18 p.m. GMT
The Folding/Packing Process:

I forgot to mention that the packing and unpacking process should be fairly quick. I'm sure that an umbrella-like speed is not possible, but a set of steps similar to playing with Transformers (the toys) would be ideal.
By Outernet on 15-Apr-14 7:22 p.m. GMT
I had previously made a mistake in stating that an umbrella-design was not technically feasible. I've since contacted a few RF engineers and the problems that an flexible fabric design would pose are actually quite solvable. Please feel free to use the following examples for design inspiration. An umbrella-design is perfectly acceptable for as an entry.




By Outernet on 18-Apr-14 2:23 p.m. GMT
My apologies if I was not more clear earlier. Regardless of the what material or folding mechanism is used, the interior of the dish must be parabolic in shape.