EntrepreneurshipProduct Developement

What Experts Says On- Invention And Product Designing For Product Development

1 Mins read
What Experts Says On- Invention And Product Designing For Product Development

Sandip Paul

Sandip Paul is a critically acclaimed Indian Industrial designer, three times TEDx speaker, winner of the prestigious Red Dot Design Award twice and recipient of the "Designpreneur" title from Shri Narendra Modi. He has designed over 700+ products for his clients worldwide. Paul re-defines everyday objects to create innovative and iconic bestselling products. His designs are led by user centric innovation and refined sense of style. He is known to deliver business focused, technology driven product ideas. The GM Bulb holder #designedbypaul in 2004 is estimated to have sold over 5400 million pieces...and still counting! Paul has won over 34 design awards including the LiteOn Merit Award from President of Taiwan Mr.Ma Ying-jeou in 2010, Japanese Eyewear Design Opus Award 2006 & 2009, Elle Decor 2011 Young Talent Award and was a Finalist at 2009 Index Award, Denmark.

Keen interest in observing people and surroundings and admiration for various sort of objects is a necessary skill for Product Innovation and Development. According to Mr. Sandip Paul, converting observations of people and surroundings into product lines can go a long way in the field of product development. The small little products lying around us are a part of our everyday lives and serve us brilliantly. Working on small improvisations onto these products could actually improve the way manufacturers think. Re- thinking the way we use our everyday products can impact our lives to a great extent as these small objects lying around us are actually the things which help us to find solutions. Mr. Paul shares with us a list of such little seemingly insignificant objects which with some improvisations are making a huge difference to our lives.

  1. Newspaper Launcher:

During his course of working for a newspaper, he would usually go home around 3:30 early in the mornings where Mr. Paul would observe a very interesting phenomenon almost every day. As these wee hours were the time for the newspaper delivery guys to pack up their bags and start rolling out, Mr. Paul observed that they would roll up the paper and throw these rolls up to different heights in the apartments- the first floor, second floor, third floor, etc. and they repeated this activity everyday which made him realize how difficult and tiresome task it was. It was at this moment that an idea struck him, of making a newspaper launcher or dispenser. Even though he felt that it was a silly idea at first but soon he realized that instead of just observing people and commenting and being a person who only knows how to criticize the society, he wanted to be the person who can actually deliver solutions from these observations. This made him realize that product design was probably the one field which would give him the direction to work on all these seemingly stupid ideas to come up with something productive and useful. This ‘Newspaper Launcher’ also helped him bag his first award in the field of designing.

  1. Disposable Toilet Mug:

While travelling back and forth from his hometown Kolkata to his college in Ahmedabad, Mr. Paul had to rely a lot on the trains. An interesting and quite touching observation he made on these journeys was the foul smelling and unpleasant sights of the railway toilets. As using water to wash off after defecation is the most common practice in India, he observed that in spite of having water taps installed in the toilets, there weren’t any containers or mugs to hold the water. In this case the passengers were left with the only choice of using plastic cups or cutting plastic bottles and using them. But this creates a lot of litter in and around the toilet space and along the tracks as well. This led him to the invention of the disposable toilet mug made out of paper which can disintegrate in a few hours after usage and is completely safe even if thrown on the tracks as it is made of paper and glued together making it completely biodegradable. Its neatly folded design makes it quite convenient to be either carried easily in the pocket or in the luggage as it won’t take up much space. When figuring out how to get it made, he decided that the ragpickers would be the ideal guys to make this product and make it available along the tracks. As Indian Railway tracks are laid across the country criss- crossing thousands of kilometers and it will be a logistic problem to actually provide plastic or metal mugs at all the stations. So training the ragpickers into folding pieces of paper into toilet mugs came as a well- received solution not just by the Indian Railways but also by the National Institute of Design (NID). This disposable toilet mug besides securing him the Design Business Excellence Award, also is a part of the permanent collection at the Design Museum in Denmark.

  1. Utility Tray:

During one of his home visits in order to understand the needs and living conditions of the people in ordinary environments, he made a significant notice of the plastic crates that people were using to store onions and potatoes in the kitchen was actually consuming a part of their kitchen space. In addition to this, he also observed that the refrigerators in the kitchen or the living areas were not utilizing the vertical spaces above them. Once a refrigerator is placed there, that space is completely blocked. This led him into inventing a small tray called the ‘Utility Tray’ which is meant for storing onions and potatoes for dry storage beneath the refrigerators.
A little bit of height to the refrigerator wouldn’t do much harm. On the contrary, it will help in utilizing the space besides freeing up space which was initially required to keep other containers for holding potatoes and onions. This seemingly simple thought and observation was adopted by many brands and is now commonly available all across the country.

  1. Angular Multi- Plug:

The problem with a regular multi- plug or a two- pin plug isn’t visible at the first sight. But on actually using it, we tend to realize that the two- pin plug gets loose after a while and since it is a compete cuboid, the plug tends to fall off due to gravity. By making a small change in the slant of the plug and giving it an angle of 40 degrees helped in stopping the plug from falling down as now it could be easily held up due to its own weight. The final product- this ‘Angular Multi- plug’ has been selling really well for the last ten years.

  1. Cloth Line Clip with a Twist:

Another simple product of everyday use- the cloth line clip has two basic problems. Not only does it break- off easily as the plastic gets brittle out in the sun but also the metal spring inside it leaves rust marks on the clothes. It is this metal spring which is always in tension and breaks- off after repeated use. In order to resolve these two issues, he came up with the idea of removing out this spring and finalizing a design in such a way that the entire functionality could be achieved by a single piece of plastic. So a clothes clip having dual jaws and two ends was invented. Even if one end broke off, the other could be used freely, thus increasing the longevity of the product. This also made the production and recycling very easy as there is only a single component involved thus saving the trouble of segregating two different elements.

  1. Multi – Use Furniture:

Another interesting space is the interaction of furniture with people as people are actually using them and they must feel comfortable. When the British Council asked Mr. Paul to design furniture for the library space, the brief given by them surprised him. They didn’t want people to be very comfortable for a long time. Though they surely wanted people to be relaxed as most of their visitors were youngsters, but they also wanted it to be a very fun and functional kind of product which could be used in any direction as required. This made him to design the product on which people could sit in any manner- forwardly, cross- legged or even stand up on to reach a certain height as it is quite sturdy. Its light- weight and in- built handle makes it convenient to be carried around. This design proved to be very comfortable for sitting for a short span of time as without a backrest, it isn’t easy to sit for longer durations.

  1. Transform T.V:

In most of the Indian homes, LCD televisions are mounted on the walls. The stands which the company had invested in and were given along with the television sets lie unused and seem a complete waste of money. Instead, people are using glass tops or wooden planks for the same. So they zeroed in on the idea of converting this stand into a shelf. It took six months’ time to do the engineering in order to avoid increasing the cost of the product and to keep it simple. Thus the ‘Transform T.V’ was designed for and launched in India.

Mr. Paul believes that you don’t have to sit in isolation to come up with ideas. The solutions are all around you. You just have to be more observant towards them.


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