A new deceptively simple device currently finishing up a successful crowdfunding campaign via Kickstarter seeks to tackle one of the greatest challenges all small business owners and entrepreneurs face. That challenge is how to track the time they spend on projects more effectively. The ZEI is a toy-like connected time-tracking piece of hardware with a design that belies the sophisticated technology within.
Describing the ZEI as ingenious might not completely capture the overall effort that went into this device. It is practical, whimsical and engaging. According to the company, this is the first Internet of Things (IoT) time-tracking hardware on the market.
You can customize the blank surface of the ZEI by writing, sticking or drawing something on each of its eight sides.
These sides can be programmed for different tasks, and by simply flipping the corresponding label on top, the technology within begins tracking a different activity. To start timing another project, all that is required is to place one of the other seven faces on top, and ZEI will stop time tracking the current project and start a new one.
Do you want to add details to your project? Just shake the ZEI and a text field or the project’s to do list opens on your device. The mobile app extends the capabilities of the device by letting you switch, stop or edit a task on the go. In addition to the company’s app, the device can also be integrated into existing time tracking applications.
Zei Time Tracker Use Case and Availability
On its Kickstarter page, the company says its target customers are mostly creatives, engineers, developers, accountants, lawyers, assistants, freelancers and craftsmen. These are individuals who are working on up to 8 projects/activities/clients a week and their desk is a central hub.
The ZEI is designed and, for all practical purposes, seems to have achieved streamlined the task of filling out time sheets and forms in a very efficient — even enjoyable — way.
Retail price for the ZEI will be $139, after the Kickstarter campaign closes.