For years, QuadraClicks has offered, like many companies, a computer accessory designed for a fairly specific audience. In the case of this California-based company, what’s offered is a mouse designed to address comfort and long-term stress and strain to the wrist and hand.
But then, like many companies, after the pandemic hit a year ago, QuadraClicks faced a challenge and an opportunity with manufacturing supply chains disrupted and so many people working (and gaming) from home.
We took the opportunity to find out more from QuadraClicks’ CEO Qeric Koten about where the company and its main product, the RBT mouse, has been, where it’s going. In particular, we wanted to find out more about how the changes in the last year might shape the company and product in terms of gamers, game developers, and the esports community. (Editor: The Q/A was lightly edited without affecting context.)
Events for Gamers (E4G): What’s the story behind QuadraClicks? How did you get started on this journey, and what led to the launch of the RBT Rebel Real mouse?
Qeric Koten: Interesting how life sometimes throws at you a bunch of lemons without letting you know there’s a possibility for lemonade. Growing up a gaming enthusiast it’s no surprise I’d given League of Legends over 1,000 hours of my life in just under a year and the game loved me so much so that numb fingers, carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, stiff neck, migraines were just Riot’s natural way of saying “thanks”. My right hand became weak, picking up an orange would trigger needle-filled pains in the palm, and with it rage and a sense of self-pity. It didn’t make sense to me, I was life’s best example of a serial try-hard. Didn’t party during college, GPA went from 4.0 to 2.5, gave up dating, and made good from the stock market.
In a way, I felt I shouldn’t have been “punished” so harshly for my gaming lifestyle. I tried every mouse product on the market at that time, some would cause less pain for a little while but it’d eventually become intolerable. It was decision time: a real man sacrifices a part of his body to keep the whole intact, so I cut off the mofo debilitating right hand…. Joking.
CTS surgery, like any surgery had never appealed to me, and there weren’t any real solutions then. so I made my own 12.5th option and went cold turkey. If any of you played League with me back then would’ve seen my 5 year gap of gameplay, and this was the reason. Did I mention I was a serial try-hard?
So in those five years I’ve been doodling. Drawing concepts and shredding, repeat. I was hitting walls. Someone very wise (my dad) more than once mocked me being hard headed and said I’d never stop until I hit the southern-wall. I never figured out where that southern-wall is, but I told him if I hit that wall head on and fast enough, my spirit would make it through…. leaving behind a corpse for him to keep mocking.
One day I was driving from Riverside back to Rowland on 60 W, an idea lit up. Immediately I took out a pen and started drawing going 65 mph. It was good, even the F’U’s and sign languages from passing by vehicles felt applauding. I took my drawing and made it 3D, then pitched the idea to over 100 investors (no positive response). I then took printed 3D models to make fairs and tradeshows for 2 more years (no positive response), I then booked a flight and went to Shenzhen/Dongguan/Guangdong /YiWu and visited 100 peripheral making factories (a few positive responses). I selected one factory and gave them the blueprint. Today, Rabbit Mouse sells all over Asia and I don’t get paid a penny thanks to manufacturers knocking off RBT.
Moral of the story? Leave your corpse behind.
E4G: Both the name and physical design of the RBT (Right ‘Bove Touch) mouse appear very distinctive. Can you explain the thinking behind both?
Qeric: I wanted to call it Rabbit Mouse at first but that doesn’t say anything about what it does differently, so I came up with Right ‘Bove Touch to emphasize the RBT click feature difference. The raised buttons are actually levers. The idea is to stabilize areas underneath the third knuckle or fingertips for resting, and make areas underneath the major and second knuckle for clicking possible and comfortable. This small shift in contact actually moves repetitive clicks induced pressure away from the carpal tunnel region and instead moves it into the forearm, where muscles and tendons are not vulnerable to repetitive trauma. Fingertips at rest instead of “hover” creates zero hydrostatic pressure and reduces stress in the carpal tunnel.
E4G: With the RBT Rebel Real mouse focused on carpal tunnel and repetitive stress injuries, esports teams checking out this mouse seems logical. How are you working with esports teams and players right now?
Qeric: We have been sponsoring a few CS: GO, COD & Dota 2 teams and players. I personally like to gift random individuals with an RBT mouse when I notice the player seems to be struggling with CTS.
E4G: In the coming months, are there any online or in-person esports events where observers might see the RBT Rebel Real mouse in use by competitors
Qeric: Most likely in Call of Duty tournaments.
E4G: In what other portions of the gaming community have you seen interest and adoption of the RBT Rebel Real?
Qeric: Disabled gamers who have had hand/finger injuries have found real value in RBT’s knuckle clicking technology. I only found out about this fairly recent because someone tagged me on Instagram. Dude is a real fighter and crazy talented, someone signs him. https://www.instagram.com/letzzdodizz/
The Q/A continues on the next page, with Qeric’s thoughts on the pandemic’s impact, the cost-to-value discussion about the RBT mouse, and more.