We believe that real innovation solves real problems. That great design stems from great understanding. That collective thinking inspires collective progress. Curious by nature and driven to invent the best outdoor living solutions, we founded outerLABS to connect with our community throughout the product development process and partner in creating a brighter future, outside.
Connection is at the core of everything we do at Outer. We innovate to make it easier for people to connect to each other, the planet, and the products in their lives. With outerLABS, we want to explore a more direct and meaningful connection with our community.
outerLABS is a space and open invitation to customers to join in our purpose-driven product development process. We want to learn about people’s daily outdoor living and seasonal struggles. We want to gather feedback on early stage prototypes and hear new ideas. We want to take everything we learn and invent — or reinvent — products and technology that solve the real needs of life outside.
Understanding Problems And Finding Solutions, Together
Curiosity sparks innovation, and both are inherent to the Outer design philosophy. “There is a quote from Albert Einstein that I live by” explains Terry Lin, Outer Co-Founder and Chief Design Officer. “If I had an hour to solve a problem, I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.”
The product development process always begins with the same question: Why does the world need another _____? (Fill in the blank.) Because our planet doesn’t have enough raw materials to satisfy every whim, we thoughtfully consider the value we want to bring to the world. If it doesn't solve a problem and upend the status quo, it’s not worth making.
outerLABS opens a direct line of communication between our community and product team, so we can better understand the solutions people want and need. Members will have the opportunity to answer polls, submit suggestions, and provide feedback on prototypes in real time.
An Unprecedented Look Behind The Scenes
As a platform for open dialogue, outerLABS also gives us the opportunity to show our community all the care and commitment that goes into realizing our ambitions and getting products to market.
“We look forward to having customers join us in the process — the ups and the downs,” says Terry. Along with other designers on the team, he will share exclusive content, including emails and video updates diving into material sciences, engineering breakthroughs, manufacturing challenges, and durability testing.