Noted as the largest Kickstarter funding to date in Europe, the Zano mini-drone promised too much – and has now tanked. Completely. But this is part of a larger pattern emerging in the imaging industry, as we now offer the next installment of what we’ve decided is a new series entitled, “Not Everyone Likes the Concept of Minimum Viable Products,” or perhaps “What Works for Software Companies May Not Work Quite as Well for Hardware Companies.”
After raising more than £2 million on Kickstarter plus taking additional pre-orders even before the Kickstarter campaign began, British company Zano was well-positioned to make a big splash in drone photography and videography.
As long as it delivered what it promised.
The CEO has resigned and the company just announced they've halted the project altogether and are pursuing “a creditors' voluntary liquidation.”
The project has gone belly up.
I’ve written it before, and I’ll write it here again: I’m very sympathetic to entrepreneurs, I like the idea of crowd-funding and I understand the tension between getting a product perfect and getting it out the door.
But insofar as putting out hardware products before they’re quite ready seems to be a growing trend (see our posts on Samsung’s NX1 [B&H|Amazon] , Sony A7s II [B&H|Amazon] and Leica SL here, here and here) — it seems increasingly clear that unless you know the people involved, it’s prudent to wait a bit before snapping up the newest gear — startup or global conglomerate alike.
Via Crowdfund Insider:
Back in December 2014, British company Torquing Group took to Kickstarter with a mission to raise funds for its new nano “smart” drone, Zano. The project was met with backer enthusiasm and excitement as it secured a grand total of £2,335,119 ($3,550,665.20 USD).
The Zano was supposed to be smart because you “task it” as opposed to flying the device. Backers supported the project because it was described as packing tons of tech into a very small package like WiFi, HD camera, GPS, Barometric Pressure reader, IR Obstacle avoidance, image stabilization. The list was long.
Things were looking pretty good. At the beginning of September 2015, Torquing Group announced it had shipping to first few units … a dream come true for drone fans.
But now it appears as if this smart drone will never quite fly. In a backers only notification, Zano creator Torquing group announced it has filed for voluntary liquidation. Zano is no more.
for the complete story, visit here.
Via sUAS News:
It was Europe’s most successful Kickstarter project – but now the Zano mini-drone is in deep crisis.
Last night, the former chief executive of Torquing Group – the firm behind the Zano – resigned. That left the thousands who had backed the firm with more than £2m a year ago in despair.
Ivan Reedman, the engineer driving the design of the mini-drone, explained why he was going in a post on a Zano forum.
“My resignation is due to personal health issues and irreconcilable differences,” he wrote.
Read full article at sUAS News “BBC: Kickstarter’s Zano drone fails to fly”
ZANO in action
(cover photo credit: snap from the sUAS News)