- Thomson Reuters
Facebook just bought a startup to help it quickly build and prototype hardware.
The small team behind Nascent Objects will join the secretive Facebook hardware lab known as Building 8 for an undisclosed sum, both companies announced on Monday. Recode first reported the news.
Nascent Objects owns a “modular electronics platform” that can quickly prototype gadgets using methods like 3D printing.
Building 8 is led by Regina Dugan, the former head of Google’s advanced technologies team who Mark Zuckerberg recruited earlier this year to run Facebook’s hardware efforts.
Here’s a video that shows Nascent’s software in action:
“Together, we hope to create hardware at a speed that’s more like software,” Dugan said about buying Nascent Objects on her Facebook page Monday.
Facebook has been staffing up Dugan’s top secret, “DARPA-style” Building 8 team in recent months while simultaneously experimenting in public with hardware projects like Aquila, a solar-powered drone the company hopes will beam free internet access to areas like sub-saharan Africa.
Here’s Nascent Objects CEO Baback Elmieh’s full blog post announcing the Facebook acquisition:
Nascent Objects was founded on the principle that product development shouldn’t be so hard. That’s why we created the world’s first modular consumer electronics platform – to make product development fast, easy and accessible. By combining hardware design, circuitry, 3D printing and modular electronics, our technology allows developers to go from concept to product in just weeks, much faster and less expensive than traditional methods.
That’s also why we’ve decided to continue our mission at Facebook and Building 8. We’re excited to build products that can open the world to everyone and create on a scale we couldn’t have imagined before.
People have become used to the idea that with software, you can have whatever you want, whenever you want it. We want to make this happen with hardware – and we think Facebook is the best place to make this a reality.
We’d like to thank our investors Orestone Capital, Co-Creation Capital, early customers, design partner Ammunition, and advisory board for their steadfast support.
We look forward to getting started with Facebook!
–Baback Elmieh, CEO