Macheen, a self-described global cloud service provider for connected devices, has made its U.S. debut with the announcement that its pre-configured devices are available on Sprint’s broadband network. The company’s service has been available in parts of Europe since February, though it has yet to name relationships with any European service providers.
Macheen’s approach is to forge relationships with makers of consumer electronics—laptops, tablets and other gadgets—to make them “hot” out of the box and not necessarily beholden to any one provider’s broadband connectivity. Macheen has said that Dell is using its service in the U.S. and Germany to provide its customers with broadband connectivity when they buy certain Dell devices, for example.
The approach potentially moves device makers more into the service realm and a more competitive position with service providers—though Sprint characterized the recent announcement of availability on its network as a boon to Sprint’s efforts and a way of leveraging supply chain integration with a device maker across multiple consumer channels.
In this video on GigaOm, Macheen CEO Richard Schwartz makes reference to both iTunes and Amazon Kindle, but skirts the issue of precisely what Macheen’s revenue model is:
What we’ve done is push the envelope for cloud computing. What we’ve put together is a cloud of clouds, meaning that our service platform in fact weaves together a number of other cloud services we’ve combined to offer what we offer. And it is indeed challenging. The state of the art for cloud service is a single web service delivering the cloud—a single web site, in fact. What we’re doing is almost a giant mashup of different service. That involves putting together different operating models, different support agreements and a number of other things to deliver that service.
In June, Macheen announced that it had closed a $10 million Series B funding round led by North Bridge Venture Capital that included existing investors include DFJ Mercury, which led the company’s Series A financing round last year.