These Star Wars speakers are so cool the company quit Kickstarter in 3 days

In case you somehow weren’t aware that Star Wars fans are a devoted bunch, a Kickstarter campaign for ACWorldwide’s upcoming Bluetooth speakers shaped like the heads of C-3PO and Stormtroopers is absolute proof. The company launched the campaign on Sept. 30, only to shut it down on Oct. 2 after it’s early buzz turned into an offer from a deep-pocketed investor. In only three days, the speakers had already gained 242 backers pledging more than half of the £60,000 goal (about $91,068 at the time of publishing).

As Disney knows all too well, Star Wars equals solid gold.

After celebrating the 100-backer milestone on Oct. 1, ACWorldwide quite suddenly added an update the next day announcing that it was ending the crowdfunding campaign because “a tech business investor … made us the biggest offer of all: all the funds we need to complete this project and bring our speakers to you all.” It’s an exciting development for the company, as well as for those who managed to get their pledges in before the campaign was cancelled. The company assured backers in the update that it would still deliver on the pledges that came through before the campaign halted.

Given the speakers’ awesome aesthetic, it’s not a surprise that the company was able to garner as much buzz as it did. The company apparently spent some time getting licensing approved by Lucasfilm and Disney before launching the campaign, which allowed the brand to nail the characters’ likeness. Better still, the speakers even use iconic Star Wars phrases.  For example, the C-3PO speaker will drop the famous line from Return of the Jedi, “I do believe they think I am some sort of god” when it’s paired with a smartphone or tablet. It’s enough to set any Star Wars-loving heart aflutter.

We all know that looks aren’t everything, so fortunately these speakers were designed with functionality in mind, too. Along with Bluetooth wireless connection, the speakers can be plugged into your PC or external audio system using an aux cable. Another cool feature is that when the speakers are paired with a phone and music is playing, the music will automatically pause when a call comes in.

Naturally, sound quality is slightly suspect in such a novelty item, but the company claims to have made that a point of serious focus. In addition to being Star Wars fans, the team is comprised of audio experts who say they’ve made sure to deliver the sound expected from a high-quality speaker. “Our 2.1 system combines stereo sound with a down-facing ported subwoofer offering truly awesome, powerful bass that’s loud enough to drown out a Wookiee battle cry,” writes ACW.

During the campaign’s (short) run, the most popular pledge was the £99 offer (approximately $149), which came with a Stormtrooper helmet speaker. A total of 116 people opted for this pledge, with C-3PO trailing behind with 42 backers at the same pledge price. Of course, having the set is also appealing, as shown by the 48 backers who spent £198 (approximately $299) on the duo. Other (more expensive) options included special editions of the speakers, like the early serial number collector’s editions, the rose gold plated C-3PO, and the white gold plated Stormtrooper.

Based on the overwhelming response to the products, the investor who got in on the action made a good call. It’s unclear how the new offer will affect the team’s manufacturing timeline, but originally the intent was to have the speakers ready to ship beginning in January. Of course, just when the rest of us can get our hands on the speakers remains to be seen, but there’s a lesson here: When it comes to grabbing badass Star Wars gear, it doesn’t pay to delay.

Home Theater

Vizio is still rocking the Black Friday spirit with these TV and soundbar deals

If you missed out on all the great TV deals this past Black Friday and Cyber Monday, don't worry, Vizio has you covered. The company has some great discounts on its most popular 4K TVs and sounbar systems. But don't delay -- some of these…
Music

Spotify is the best streaming service, but its competitors aren’t far behind

It can be hard to decide which music streaming service is for you, so we've picked out the individual strengths of the most popular services, aiming to make your decision a little easier.
Gaming

Apple Mac users should take a bite out of these awesome games

Contrary to popular belief, there exists a bevy of popular A-list games compatible for Mac computers. Take a look at our picks for the best Mac games available for Apple fans.
Computing

3DMark’s Port Royal lets you benchmark ray tracing on Nvidia’s RTX cards

UL is adding another benchmarking utility to its popular 3DMark suite to help gamers measure their graphics card's ray tracing performance. You'll soon be able to measure how Nvidia's RTX 2070, 2080, and 2080 Ti stack up.
Social Media

What do yodeling and Kylie Jenner have in common? YouTube’s top 2018 videos

In a true nod to the variety found on YouTube, the platform's top 10 list of videos from 2018 range from celebrities to sports, from perfectly tossing a picture frame on the wall to a kid yodeling in aisle 12 at Walmart.
Music

From Paul McCartney to Mariah Carey, this is the best holiday music

Whether you're a fan of classic jazz standards or modern R&B masterpieces, there's something for everyone on our playlist of the best holiday music. Pour some eggnog and curl up by the fire, this one is sure to get you in the holiday…
Music

From Jay Rock to Saba, these are the 50 best albums of 2018

We've spent the year listening to new albums, digging deep, and culling our master list into 50 favorites. From blockbuster releases to hidden gems, these are the best albums of 2018.
Emerging Tech

Feast your eyes on the wildest, most elaborate Rube Goldberg machines ever built

Want to see something totally mesmerizing? Check out several of the best Rube Goldberg machines from across the internet, including one that serves cake and other that do ... nothing particularly useful.
Music

Apple Music may sign up more exclusive artists with purchase of Platoon

Apple purchased London-based Platoon, which is a startup that helps independent musicians get discovered by major labels. The acquisition may help Apple Music sign up more exclusive artists.
Cars

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…
Music

Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ becomes the most-streamed 20th-century song

Queen's iconic Bohemian Rhapsody has become the most-streamed 20th-century song. Knocking Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit off the top spot, the British band's 1975 classic has now been streamed 1.6 billion times globally.
Music

Jam out in style with the 25 best playlists on Spotify

Music is the world's most potent drug, and the best playlists on Spotify will make you catch feelings. We've scoured the service for its top collections, and brought them together in one place -- for you.
Music

Tune in to the best internet radio stations for your listening pleasure

Even in the streaming era, radio stations get some of the best exclusives and curate some of the finest handpicked playlists around. Here are the best internet radio stations, for your listening pleasure.
Home Theater

Radiohead, The Cure, and more to join Rock Hall of Fame. Listen to their hits

Radiohead, The Cure, Janet Jackson, Stevie Nicks, and more have been selected to join the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019. Here are our favorite songs from the four artists' hit-filled careers.