Project: V | Evolution of Protection

vpb

Hello, hello, community!

The updates just keep coming! Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the new V, its Pen, and its Keyboard, it’s time to safely package them for the upcoming journey to our eager customers. That, though, as we’ve seen with previous products, is no mean feat of engineering in and of itself. From concept to prototyping and ultimately production, we are taking the necessary steps to develop the V packaging. So, kick back, relax, and stay a while as we take you on a behind-the-scenes journey of developing the box.

The concepts - round 1

Protection is the key

The box for the V 2021 has some big shoes to fill, and very specific goals to meet, as our product manager @Rob describes below:

  • Adequately protecting the product
  • Looking awesome
  • Providing a good unboxing experience
  • Reducing environmental impact
  • Being efficient to ship
  • Making stock keeping easier
  • Staying within budget

With those goals in mind, our lead designer @Joni drew up several concepts to open up discussion with our manufacturer, and a multi-piece box design was chosen to prototype.

Concept 1
Concept 1 - the accessories are stored underneath the V.

Concept 3
Concept 2 - The accessories are stored next to the V.

Concept 5.1
Pen box concept.

Concept 5
Keyboard box concept with pen in its box.

The initial prototype

After our conversation with the manufacturer, the first prototype was built for real-world assessment. For a hybrid of the concepts above, they went with a tiered insert approach, in which all accessories, the envelope (containing the quick start guide and goodies), and the V itself would be layered on top of one another.

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The inner shell, with tiered insert designed to hold the charger and cable (in that box in the center), the envelope (in the middle rectangular cutout) and the V itself (in the largest rectangular cutout). The prototype was made from naturally-colored cardboard and then colored; you can see its original color in the scratched areas. Note - the latest prototype is made from black-colored cardboard.

P1003991-Enhanced
A lateral view of the inner shell with a V 2021 laid in its space. Note that the edge of the insert can be seen showing the natural cardboard color. Also notice the improper fitment of the insert in the shell. Additionally, the V comes in contact with the outer shell directly.

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The inner shell with the outer shell beside. The white paper on the inside of the outer shell (left) gives the box a slightly more premium look.

P1003997-Enhanced
A close up, lateral view of the tiered insert removed from the inner shell. The entire insert was made by stacking layers of cut cardboard together to house the envelope and charger box.

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A close up, lateral view of the tiers of the insert. Although the edges here are dyed black, the coloring is uneven due to the manual cutting process.

The quest for sustainability

Less is more

After examining the initial prototype, Joni went back to the drawing board to develop additional insert options to spark a simpler implementation from our manufacturer.

Concept v1
Version 1 - multiple inserts in the inner shell of the box, the innermost insert having 2 options, with separated charger and cable or conjoined compartments. This concept, using option 1 for the insert, was chosen as the basis of the new prototype.

Concept v2
Version 2 - a single insert for the charger an cable, tiered lower than the outer shell to accommodate both the envelope and the V.

Concept v3
Version 3 - separate boxes for the V and accessories.

Improvements all around

To achieve our goals, the new insert design was simplified to use less material than the multitiered approach, while retaining its protective features. It’s also both thinner and shorter, adding significant space for padding between the V and the shell.

In addition, rather than having a fully closed box for the charger, the prototype has compartments snugly holding the charger and cable in an open-box tray. This gives the user direct access to charger and cable. The envelope is placed over that tray, being the same shape, removing the need for a tier between the two layers.

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Charger tray, surrounded by new insert, in inner shell.

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The envelope on top of the charger tray. We used a Spectrum envelope to test our design. Additionally, notice the increased space (depth) available for placing the V.

P1004046-Enhanced
A V housing laid on top of the envelope in the inner shell, with the outer shell next to it. The “bezels” of the entire shell have been reduced to just larger than the V, leading to a further decrease in material use. Also note the piece of foam in the outer shell - this will protect the contents by dampening impacts during shipping.

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All four pieces laid out beside each other.

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A lateral view of a V 2021 placed on top of the inner shell, showing just how slim the overall box is.

Moving forward

We’re in the process of fine tuning the the current prototype design to improve structure as well as add print and finish. Notably, our team will be on site for printing calibration. Our next round of packaging improvement explorations include:

  1. Optimize box structure according to device and accessories weight.
  2. Apply and compare two film types: anti-scratch vs. silky touch.
  3. Reinforce the inner box to retain its shape during accessories removal and disassembly.
  4. Source a black foam to replace the brown one.
  5. Replace the foam in 4) with paper if the latter provides enough protection.
  6. Produce all paper parts of a box in one go to minimize color difference throughout the packaging.

Who knew that a simple box could be so complicated? But you won’t settle for anything less, so neither will we.

Have a great weekend!

nlbanner

13 Likes

I would like to see less foam and more paper/cardboard… And one thing ist the most important imo: never glue foam and cardboard. You could maybe wrap the v Into a cotton cloth (which we can use to wipe the screen) to have a similar effect like foam…

9 Likes

Will the power supply plug be region specific to where each customer lives?

2 Likes

Will this design work for a UK three-pin plug on the power supply?

1 Like

Good morning (for me), @dibadibadu

You make some excellent observations, and I’ve forwarded your suggestions to our project manager Kira to take to our manufacturer for consideration.

Thanks for your suggestions!

Good morning as well to you @apgray and @brightonBreezy

I’ve brought up these charger related questions with our product manager Rob and once I have clarification I’ll be sure to let you both know the specifics.

Thanks!

6 Likes

Thank you @nkyadav, much appreciated

3 Likes

You’re very welcome!

Have a great weekend!

2 Likes

I personally think that for a product that is being shipped to its customers exclusively and not being stocked in a retail store, Concept 2 provides better crush protection than Concept 1.

Concept 1 is great if all units are shipped together to retail stores and taken from the store individually by the customer.

Having them delivered individually by courier however means that despite the additional packaging that will be required around that box for the final shipping package, giving a little extra room around the unit as a crush-zone would be a welcomed precaution… I like the idea of having nothing below the unit to be pressed into the panel and placing the accessories to the side where they are surrounded by enough material to support lateral compression.

…but that’s just my $0.02

As for the choice of materials… as much recycled paper-board as possible please.

5 Likes

Hey, @hatter

Your points make good sense, and I’ve brought them up with our team to forward to the package manufacture to understand why concept 1 was the chosen concept over concept 2. I will update you here when I have an answer.

Have a great day!

3 Likes

Hey, guys!

We will have either a US or EU adapter in the box depending on the region; these are the available options for Project: V. Subsequently, the optimization of our packaging will focus on these two types of adapters.

We will have either a US or EU adapter in the box depending on the region; these are the available options for Project: V. Subsequently, the optimization of our packaging will focus on these two types of adapters.

I can live with it not being beautifully packaged and, if really necessary, not having a UK plug but if that’s the case the charger needs to have interchangeable cables rather than be integrated with the plug.

This move will disenfranchise all UK customers and I’m not even sure of the legality of selling into the UK market without a UK plug.

2 Likes

It is exactly what we are going for; the Type-C cable will be separate from the adapter.

That’s not what I mean. I was talking about the the mains side of the charger. UK purchasers are going to have to buy their own - you are going to get a LOT of problems about this with UK customers.

And it looks like I was correct about the legality: Consumer Rights Bill (5th March 2014).

1 Like

And Australians also. I live in Australia. What are Australian customers meant to do?

1 Like

What sort of plugs do you use in Australia?

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1 Like

Good morning @hatter

I’ve received some feedback from our project manager @Kira wrt to your comments on the V 2021 packaging and the reasons for picking the concept that we did.

As for why we didn’t place the charger and accessories to the side:

  1. The weight for the box will be uneven, making it unsuitable to pass the drop testing.
  2. The box itself would end up being too thin, thus making it easier to deform, which leads to making it hard to pass drop test. Current design has several layers of cushioning (two layer of cardboard and envelope) as buffer to protect the contents.
  3. From an aesthetics PoV, it’s nice to see The V first and solo when unboxing.
  4. An additional problem is that a thin box is harder to make premium because the corners are harder to fold to a perfect shape.

Hey, @brightonBreezy & @apgray

I just wanted to touch base with you on this particular issue.

The reference to the Plugs and Sockets etc. (Safety) Regulations 1994 (UK) specifically makes note of domestic mains powered appliances. Because we are based in HK as a seller, we are not selling anything domestically in the UK, but rather, we are selling in HK, that you can buy and have shipped to your country. It would be the same even if you came to HK, purchased the unit yourself, packed it in your suitcase and took it home with you.

HTH

3 Likes

Does that mean EU based consumer laws will not apply to an Eve purchase, because you are “based out of HK”?

@nkyadav You may wish to investigate this further. I think it’s highly unlikely, from a rules and regulations perspective, that manufacturing and exporting an item to an individual in a country is the same as selling it in HK and someone bringing it over in a suitcase to that country.

2 Likes

I’m not a lawyer but I’m 100% certain that “domestic” in this context is not used in the geographical sense but actually means “for the home” as opposed to “industrial” (for which there are an entirely different set of regulations).

However, I’m well aware that, for sales from outside the UK, these regulations are commonly ignored (even if they shouldn’t be).

My main problem is that the original post was the first time in the entire development of the V that I’ve seen ANY reference to only providing EU and US plugs. That is not at all acceptable. Why is it not possible to provide a convertible charger, as with the original V?

I believe mine was actually the first order when the V’s website went live but I’m now in two minds as to whether to cancel (especially given that I can’t get a UK keyboard either although I fully understand that the situation there is outside of Eve’s control).

In case I do decide to go ahead with the order, can Eve please recommend a suitable replacement charger?

2 Likes