I came across this today: http://www.adafruit.com/laser/
Pretty cool idea. People are always looking for ways to customize their stuff as their own. It’s like a tattoo for your gear. The company is giving away the business plan on how to do it for free. Kind of like the Firefox or Linux (open-source) of the business world. The only problem is the machine to do the etching is about $15-large. So, if anyone out there is in the mood to just hand out some cash, I think the cost of the machine could be re-couped relatively quickly. At $100 a laptop and $30 an ipod it wouldn’t be long before you could make it up.
150 laptops @ $100/each = $15,000
500 ipods @ $30/each = $15,000
280 ipods + 66 laptops = $15,000
You get the idea. You would just need it to catch on in the young tech industry to get it started. Like ipods and Blackberrys, it could spread pretty fast. The prices above don’t include design work/time. If someone is having you design it (think: tattoo for the artistically challenged, like myself) then you could charge more as well.
It goes way past normal engraving:
If you need me, I’ll be calling all my VC friends…