Hackable hardware heats up competition in console space

Android microconsole Ouya lands in UK

Android microconsole Ouya has landed at UK retail one year after successfully raising $8.5 million through Kickstarter.

After a three-week delay from its planned launch, Ouya sells at £100 ($100), and comes with a controller and HDMI cable.

The project’s crowdfunding campaign in July last year attracted more than 63,000 backers, and smashed records for the most funds raised by a gaming project sourcing investment direct from consumers.

The popularity of the console pre-release also saw the company accrue $15 million in private investment last month.

Despite a successful crowdfunding campaing, many backers have expressed their disappointment with the manufacturer as some donators have still yet to receive their systems as promised.

“I am pissed,” said Ouya CEO Julie Uhrman.

“Some of you have not yet received your Ouya – and, to you, I apologise. I did not promise to ship to *most* of you before we hit store shelves. I promised to ship to *all* of you. I’ve been reading your comments, and we are working to solve this.

“We delivered your Ouyas to our partner in May, and since then they have been in their custody. We paid for shipping, yet the deliveries remain incomplete. We know everyone is getting their Ouya, but it is taking longer than we expected."

Ouya has made a number of key pledges for its microconsole, requiring all games to offer some kind of free to play element, which can come in the form of a completely free game featuring microtransactions or including a demo so users can try before they buy.

The hardware has also been “built to be hacked”, allowing users to make a number of alterations to the console not traditionally allowed on other systems such as the PS3 and Xbox 360.

Head of developer relations for the hardware Kellee Santiago said the hardware had attracted support from more than 10,000 developers.

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