Latest Product Roll-Out Timeline
Today we’re sharing a new timeline for when those of you who have pre-ordered or backed us on Kickstarter can anticipate receiving your FLUID meters. First, we’d like to state the obvious – we underestimated both the difficulty and time it takes to ship a product like FLUID.
For our Kickstarter, we had working prototype that cost us +$900 to manufacture because it was made mostly of off the shelf parts. The process of re-engineering this into a product that can be produced for under $299 (our retail price) has plagued us since our Kickstarter ended. We tried using a threshold based time-to-digital converter (ASIC solution) that we were purchasing – but found we couldn’t achieve a good enough signal to noise ratio. We scrapped that plan and went to China to leverage existing clamp-on ultrasonic technology. After months of testing we found the Chinese meters were inconsistent and inaccurate. We scrapped the China partner plan and tried building our own again. Thankfully we had a number of break-throughs during this process and instead of using an ASIC we have achieved the proper noise to signal ration using our completely proprietary design.
Now we are testing this and while we’re happy with the flow sensor itself, it’s been taking longer than we hoped to iron out all the bugs. We’ve encountered bugs in the firmware with features like WiFi setup and we’ve noticed there are some issues around long-term accuracy that we’re rectifying. We’re crunching through these issues and are making progress.
We’ve given ourselves a couple of months to work these kinks out in the small pilot. Once we get to a point where we are satisfied with the performance we’ll be ready to get meters manufactured and begin shipping.
Please know that we are committed to this project and are working as fast as we can. The last thing we want to do is ship a product that doesn’t work properly or becomes inaccurate over-time. An inoperable meter and bad water usage data isn’t worth anything to you or to us.
Below you’ll find the new product roll-out timeline we’ve developed. Thank you for your continued patience.
– The FLUID Team