Shipping timeline update
Sorry for the lack of updates.
I am sad to say that July was a very difficult month for us here as we’ve run into some production problems that shifted our delivery dates.
Personally, it was also a very hard month for me due to all of the problems that happened, but I’ll make sure to update all of you more frequently in the future.
Our current estimate is that we’ll start shipping the phones in mid August and ship all of them by the end of September.
Here’s what we’ve done so far:
1) The build guide is done and online, you can take a look at it here:
2) We’ve ordered all of the components and received almost all of them (batteries, antennas, small components, boxes, screws, PCBs etc.)
Almost all of the boxes are here
3) Brain boards, Sound boards, 2G network boards, and Display boards are all manufactured and assembled (that’s 4 out of 5 circuit boards that go in your phones)
Almost all PCBs are assembled, we're just waiting for a batch of Main boards
4) All of the boxes are folded and ready for shipping
We've got A LOT of boxes waiting for the final components to arrive
5) All tools packs are packed and ready for shipping
6) The custom built software is stable and ready for fulfillment. We’ll give you a short preview of what it looks like in a future update.
7) The hardware is final and locked and we’ll publish the open-source schematics in a future update.
The issues we have encountered:
1) A huge issue that happened was that three weeks ago, our 2-year-old CNC laser cutter stopped working (after 2 years of constant flawless operation).
We use this machine to produce the acrylic casings for the devices and we still need to produce casings for 2000 phones (of a total of 3000 phones that we’re producing in this initial batch).
We had to call in an expert to try and fix the machine (and the machine is still being fixed). In the meantime, we figured out that we need to continue production, so we bought a new, bigger and better, laser cutter in order to make this Kickstarter happen.
The new machine weighs 360kg and we had to find and rent new factory space, since we’ve been running low on space anyway.
Unfortunately, this whole situation produced a 5-week setback in our production schedule.
It seems that things break when you need them the most. We should’ve predicted this and bought an extra CNC cutter before the fulfillment.
Getting this out of the van was fun fun fun
2) The main boards still need to be assembled on a pick and place machine. We’ve received the PCBs and the PCB assembly company is assembling them as we speak.
Our PCB supplier had some production delays and had to extend the delivery dates for our 3000pcs PCB batch.
3) We’re yet to receive all the speakers for the initial batch. The factory that’s manufacturing the speakers extended our delivery date by 4 weeks due to a raw material shortage and the vacation period that we’re currently in.
4) We are still waiting for the SIM7600 4G modules. We should’ve had the modules by now, but our supplier also extended the delivery date by 4 weeks as they are missing some key components for the batch of modules that we’ve ordered.
Issues with 4G
A thing we didn’t anticipate, at all, was the complexity of building a 4G phone.
The 2G phones were basically done weeks ago, but the level of technical support to get the 4G phones to work was far more than we thought. Looking back, I would have planned this differently if I knew, but here we are.
Our current schedule looks like this:
12th August -> All Main boards are assembled and tested
14th August -> All speakers arrive from the factory
16th August -> 2G device shipping starts
20th August -> All casings are laser cut and ready for shipping
26th August (the latest) -> 4G modules arrive from the factory
29th August (the latest) -> 4G shipping starts
All preorders are fulfilled by the end of September
I am not pleased with this production delay and I am really not happy with writing updates like this one.
I admit that we didn’t imagine the development and production process will look like this and I’d really like that we could’ve done things differently.
Please stick with us and give us more time. We’re doing everything we can to fulfill your expectations and our promises.
- Albert and the rest of the team