There's something about the Coolest Cooler project on Kickstarter that has funders flinging open their crowdfunded minimalist wallets and throwing money at it. Could it be the catchy orange color? Or perhaps the built-in cutting board? Maybe it's the extra-wide easy-rolling tires. But most likely it's the blender. It's hard to resist the siren call of an 18-volt battery-powered rechargeable blender built into the ultimate high-tech cooler.
Visions of margaritas and pina coladas have danced in front of nearly 50,000 backers' eyes as the Coolest Cooler handily took the top spot on the list of most-funded Kickstarters (in terms of total dollar amount) of all time. The cooler is currently sitting at just over $10,500,000 with just over two days left to go. It completely obliterated its original $50,000 funding goal.
The previous record holder was the Pebble smartwatch, which ended its run at $10,266,845 back in May of 2012.
Pebble had a good stretch as king of Kickstarter, but it couldn't hold out against the ice-crushing prowess, USB charger, Bluetooth speaker, and integrated knife and plate storage of the Coolest Cooler. The majority of its backers, nearly 40,000, pledged at the $185 level for a cooler of their very own. Once you read about all the features crammed into the cooler, that pledge price seems pretty reasonable.
I've tried to hold out against the appeal of the Coolest Cooler. I tell myself it's absurd. I rarely even use a regular cooler. Why would I need one with a blender and speaker? Yet, I still want one.
That's at the heart of this Kickstarter. Nobody has a true pressing need for a cooler like this, but it's all about the want, the desire to have your beers, sodas, and sandwiches entrusted to a mad-scientist cooler with an LED light, bottle opener, and the ability to charge your phone.
The Coolest Cooler may have a long reign ahead as the most-funded Kickstarter of all time, or it could be knocked of its perch by the next great thing. Perhaps some enterprising inventor will come along with a smartwatch with a built-in blender and, by combining the top two Kickstarters, create a new crowdfunding phenomenon -- one project to rule them all.