Just hanging around the Château here in the fog, so I figured I do another post to kill some time.
- FYI~ I am waiting on only a single quote “backer” edition cube and my number is up around 93K… I apparently ordered in the afternoon of the day they closed the “December” tier. I am “locked down’, and waiting around like everybody else
- Like everybody else, I’m disappointed that the brothers are not responding with ongoing updates. It seems like a small enough chore to delegate to a minion when they are sitting on $6 million plus of our money. That simple fact leads me to believe that things are so kludged up in the supply/delivery chain that they are is clueless as we are
- I am still searching around for one of the really cheapo clones for review purposes. Twice now I have ordered cubes, thinking that that is what I am purchasing based on the photographs, only to have a duplicate style to a cube-in-hand come in the mail. [the one I am looking for is the variety that has a very long, especially flimsy looking joystick… in photos it seems to be smaller in diameter than others, has a very obvious casting nub in the center of the flat disc and an equally obvious, rough mold separation line around the edges] [if anybody has one of those that they’d like to contribute for review purposes I’d be happy to pay the shipping, but I’m no longer buying anymore of the cubes… I’ve spent too much of the fidgetative cash reserves already on this silliness]
I sincerely hope that Mark and Matthew end up making good money on this campaign. The simple fact that we are so anxiously awaiting the delivery of our units is proof and validation of the accuracy of their concept. Hoping for 750 backers and ending up with 150,000 indicates to me that they were on the right track. However, if I were in their shoes, I would certainly have come to conclusion that the cubes no longer have a long-term business potential, and would be planning on pulling out as soon as they have fulfilled our orders. Their marketing niche got gutted by the clones. [Without them, it would’ve had some long-term potential after the campaign rewards were satisfied]
Having said that:
- The folks I don’t have any sympathy for are the ones who made “purchases” of large numbers of “reward” units with the intention of reselling them for a profit on things like eBay. Anyone who did this was looking to leech off of Ansty Labs vision, project, and efforts directly. If they’ve waited to be some of the last to have their orders fulfilled because of the larger number of cubes involved and there ain’t going to be no profits because of the flood of clones on the market… well, it sucks to be you. Karma can be a bitch.
- Now, I have said this before… I don’t begrudge the folks who started turning out the clones. I am sad that Antsy Labs didn’t get to profit from the secondary market to the extent that they might have. However, from other peoples reviews already it is obvious that these are not the finalized product that we will receive as our rewards. Unlike the leeches above, the clone-clowns actually had to put some initiative and something more then just a few dollars of their own capital at risk. As I also said previously, it is naïve of us to expect that successful products, whether a Swiff-It, a vuvuzela, a pair of touchscreen gloves, or the FidgetCube won’t be imitated. The rag merchants down on 6th Avenue in NYC have been rushing knockoffs of fashion-house designer’s clothing to market for decades, and who hasn’t seen imitation Louis Vuitton handbags down at their local fleamarket… It’s not just the Chinese.
- [in all my”research” into the clones, I have not yet found them available in any brick-and-mortar stores… even in Chinatown. You still have to make your purchase somewhat blindly on the Internet, And wait for delivery]
- We supported a Kickstarter product development campaign with our contributions of approximately $20 each. None of us should have actually believed that a “fidget cube” had a $20 value. I for one can see the $5- $8 range [that the clones are being marketed at] as being far more realistic. I think that the only way to feel really great about participation in KS campaigns is if you are one of the fortunate few who get in on one of the early bird reward tiers, where your contribution will be substantially below a retail price once it goes into full marketing. That’s the only way you’re going to get a warm and fuzzy feeling, otherwise you simply are a “supporter”.
- My rationalization and justifications for my position on this whole thing, are exactly these points set out just above. If this were my project, I would’ve been disappointed that anybody profited from my project directly. I would not have hung my hopes out on the idea that I would have a lifetime income on a single product even if it were trademarked and patented. And I would’ve been deeply gratified to have simply met my KS goal… Anything after that is gravy.
A friend of mine with an already successful business recently started a Kickstarter campaign for a new product. He wanted enough venture capital to be able to supply a finished, high quality product right from the start. He funded within the first week. Once I saw that he had reached his goal, I elected not to subscribe. Even though I looked into it within a few hours of starting, I had missed out on all the early bird specials, and if I now decide I want the product I will simply pay retail… I know what he charges. Plus, I don’t have to hang on a delivery date for my reward.
Enough for now. Let’s all hope that an absolute blizzard of shipping notices will blanket the comments page ASAP. Barring that, let’s hope that we get at least an informative update from the folks at Antsy Labs.
CIAO and chill… here’s a pretty picture>>