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Kickstarter is a site where many up and coming companies can go to get crowd funding for their projects. In theory the site is a great option and it’s awesome that it’s available to those with a plethora of great ideas, but that lack funding. Though the site has plenty of positives and success stories, there are an alarming amount of products that just don’t seem to get it together after reaching their target funding goals-one such product is Pressy.
Pressy is essentially a button that became known as the “Almighty Android Button” and for great reasons. The button could be plugged into your smartphones headphone jack, and act as a programmable button. Many people loved it as an alternative to the capacitive buttons that have become the norm on Android devices. That love for the device was proven when Pressy surpassed their funding goal of $40,000 in just one day. In fact, by the time pledging was closed on Kickstarter for the product, they had reached $695,138. However, those who pledged money to support the product and the brains behind it, have not received a product. Instead, they have received apologies and a lack of communication.
The smallest pledge amount that was optioned was $17 dollars and for that you got Pressy and the app. That means the over 40,000 people who pledged were due a Pressy and the app to go with it, and the expected date of arrival was in April 2014. There was no word given at the end of April or even for the first couple weeks of May as to why a product has not shipped. Then after a few weeks of waiting, pledgers got a response. The reason the company gave for not shipping was hardware issues. They claimed that after manufacturing 30k+ devices, they found a high rate of failure after being pressed a certain amount of times. That announcement came with one of the first apologies and a new ship date. Being somewhat vague, they told backers of the product the new ship date was by the end of May 2014-we are now in June and there are more issues than shipped devices.
Originally, the app that came with the device was supposed to be available on the Google Play Store-that may not be the case. According to the company’s Facebook page, the app that was supposed to come with the device will have to be downloaded outside of the Google Play Store. The company claims this is due to a fear of copyright issues that may occur with other similar devices. Pressy seemed to think they could slide this through the gaps, but original backers of the device came back with their own comments.
The original backers feel that by not adding the app to the Play Store will only further complicate things. The Play Store allows for people to update their apps very easily and that simple task becomes harder when you have to download from an unknown source. That unknown source download will also require users to allow the device to download by changing around some settings. To some Android users, this is a big no no and so they simply will not make those changes. These concerns may have actually changed the minds of the company behind Pressy.
After the backlash of angry supporters(even losing some) Pressy has taken back to Facebook and apologized for any misunderstanding in regards to this news. Though at the end of the day, Pressy will still have to fill these orders and make things right with the original backers. It is unclear if the company will decide to keep going after all of this, and only shows how important communication is for companies. Not only amongst themselves, but to their customers as well. Are you one of the many people who backed Pressy? What are your thoughts? Are you still anxiously waiting, or have you just about given up?