When I first saw a demo of Osmo, the iPad game platform that combines kids apps with real-world gameplay, I mused that it could easily be sold in Apple stores. Apparently, Apple agrees: Just a month after Osmo started to ship the first games to crowdfunding backers, Osmo got picked up by Apple, which started to sell the game in all of its 284 stores in the U.S. and Canada Thursday. Apple will sell Osmo for $80, which is below the $100 retail price the company was originally shooting for.
And [company]Tangible Play[/company], the startup behind Osmo, had some more good news to share, as it just secured a $12 million Series A round of funding led by [company]Accel Partners[/company], with participation from [company]Upfront Ventures[/company] and [company]K9 Ventures[/company]. Osmo co-founder Pramod Sharma told me during a recent interview that the funding will help to grow Osmo’s headcount, which currently stands at 13 employees, most of them engineers and designers.
Some of those resources will go towards actually having designated business development and marketing staff, he explained: “We are building a real company now.” But Sharma also said that he quickly wants to bring Osmo beyond the U.S. and Canada. “The iPad is such an international device,” he said, adding that most of the existing Osmo games also require little to no translation for foreign markets.
I’ve been a fan of Osmo ever since I first saw the product, and got my 7-year-old daughter hooked on it as well. As such, I’m glad to see how a great product is becoming a great success story: The company launched a crowdfunding campaign on its own website back in May, and was able to secure $2 million in pre-orders (about 40,000 units) in less than four months. A month later, it’s already in Apple stores. Sharma told me that he was “very surprised” by that level of success, adding: “Originally, our idea of scale was very different.”