OUYA was one of the most funded Kickstarter projects, probably second only to the Pebble smartwatch, with over $8 million they got in funding from Kickstarter donors, even though most of those donations were actually pre-orders of the console. But now OUYA is getting some real funding – $15 million from the major VC company Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
While the money they got from Kickstarters was mainly to cover the costs of all the units they had to send out, this new funding should be used to build the company. They can hire more and better employees, and it should help them increase the quality of their future generations of OUYA.
I doubt it will have a major effect on the first version, although they seem to have delayed it by a few weeks until June 25th. According to them it’s because of too high demand, which is certainly possible, considering all the buzz they got last year.
But speaking of future versions of OUYA, the team will need to build a higher quality console for the same price, or at least one with better specs, even if it continues to use mobile chips. Even for the first OUYA they could’ve chosen something like Tegra 4 or Qualcomm S600 for a mid-2013 launch. Tegra 3 is awfully obsolete as a mobile chip, and it was first released in December 2011 in a product.
But let’s assume this was their first try, and it was hard enough to put the company together as it was, and keep the price so low as a start-up. With the new funding it should get easier to negotiate prices with manufacturers, and also order many more units at once for future launches.
That’s why however their first OUYA will do, I have much higher hopes for an OUYA 2, which will really need to use a Tegra 5 chip with a Cortex A15 CPU and a Kepler GPU with the full OpenGL 4.3 API. That should make it easier to port even PC games to it (obviously with downscaled graphics). The year after that they’ll also be able to use Nvidia’s new 64 bit CPU core “Denver“, along with their next-gen graphics architecture “Maxwell”.
If OUYA tries to not lag behind Nvidia’s chip releases too much, the OUYA console could become very interesting over the next few years.