Use this space to cheer the creator along, and talk to your fellow backers.
Have a question?
I see that you announced that the valve will be available around June. Does this mean those of that paid for a valve and never received it will finally be getting one?
My links did arrive! Getting the package finally processed by German customs was a major pain, but it worked out in the end. Five links installed and all is working like a charm. :-) Thank you!
I just received an email from firstname.lastname@example.org:
"Thank you for your patience as we've been contacting all kickstarter backers in regards to their pledges. Our records indicate a pledge of $139 - 1 BaseStation, 3 Links, and 1 Valve.
As you are aware, the valve never shipped and it is currently unavailable; For this reason, we're replacing the valve with 2 Links. Please provide a shipping address we can use to mail the remaining part of your kickstarter pledge (2 Links).
That's it. No letterhead, no official company email formatting, no links, just a classic phishing email. Anybody else get this? Is this even legit?
I got my refund too (international backer).
I, for one, am glad PlantLink lives. I got my refund for the valve and when more links are available, looking to buy more and support PlantLink.
Refund received :-)
Email I recevied after a facebook comment:
Our records indicate that your pledged of $129 (1 base station and 3 links) has already been fulfilled."
"Thank you for the reply. Yes, I did receive my base station and three links. However, my pledge level also included a valve, and that's where my issue is.
When campaign decided to cancel the valve backers were promised either a $50 refund or 2 additional links. (See update #37: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1387729422/plant-link-listen-to-your-plants/posts/880372)
To the best of my knowledge neither refunds nor links were ever shipped. I know I never received any additional links or a refund.
In the "final" update (#41 https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1387729422/plant-link-listen-to-your-plants/posts/1042006) backers were told by Eduardo:
"As of today I am shutting down the company and suspending all future development."
The update also explained that refunds wouldn't be coming. I believe most backers were disappointed and some were angry, but it was understood that sometimes businesses fail and ideas don't work out.
However, now it appears that the company *didn't* shut down or suspend future efforts. An email was recently sent out trying to encourge people ot buy more product. And I see a post on Facebook that the company is out showing off the product at an event in NY.
As someone who was disappointed before, this makes me angry. I understand if the company fails, but if the company is still in operation and apparently still solvent, why hasn't efforts been made to fulfill obligations to backers? Why has zero communication happened to backers (other than email encouraging people to buy) in the past 6 months?
I eagerly await your reply."
I'll update if I hear anything.
Interestingly I just noticed that Oso's facebook page is still active. I would encourage those who have questions to *respectually* post questions and concerns there.
@Christian, oso always had some extra units produced. I'm sure they are attempting to sell whatever they can to recoup losses. The unfortunate part is that:
A.) They promised backers of the valve that they would sent links or cash when they killed that part. The promised link/cash never was sent. Cash I can *kind of* understand if they ran out of funds, but if you have links, why not at least send those? Granted, I'm not using mine right now but if I can ever figure out how to get them to communicate with ST directly, I probably will. If nothing else, at least I get some more AAAA batteries that I can use in my SmartThings devices.
B.) It doesn't appear like even if oso recoups any money from units sold that they will re-emburse backs for their losses.
To date, this has been my biggest financial loss on Kickstarter, which makes me lucky I guess I'm sure others have lost a lot more. Lima still promises to be a bigger loss eventually cause I don't think I'm going to get the product I wanted when I backed it, though I do suspect I'll eventually get a product from them... just years late.
Unfortunately it looks like that code is cloud-to-cloud... meaning the plantlinks connect to the plantlink hub, which connects to the plantlink server, which communicates with the SmartThings server, which then connects to your hub to do things.
This is far from ideal because oso does not appear to be financially stable at all. The website still exists, but I don't trust that it will be still going even one month from now.
I want a device type that allows the links to connect and communicate directly to my SmartThings hub. The hardware can already do this. I've connected a link to my ST hub. But the hub doesn't know how to read any of the data coming to it from the link.
It also looks like OsoTech open sourced my money.......
Looks like OsoTech open sourced the SmartThings integration:
I wonder if someone could make a app that can hosted locally on a Raspberry Pi for example, that would at least tell us if the soil is dry and would need watering. I am not so concerned about the plant type, but I would think that it should be able to report somehow if the soil is dry and the plant could use some watering?
What's going on? Is there new funding? Otherwise is the sale basically still for a system that's got less than a year of life left in it?
Just got an email saying they are having a sale on plant links and base stations... I wonder if they are trying to clear out thier stock.
I was quite surprised to see they are quite active on Facebook, even though the forum looks dead since the announcement. System seems to be working well.
@saxnix - I'm still monitoring. I opted for a refund; not sure what I'll see or when. It's good to see they're still following up though and haven't just closed up shop and done a bunk.
Sure enough my package arrived today in Australia. Thank you OSO. Is anyone still following here? I thought the project had died??
Looks like it was not an accident. Just received a shipping notice from USPS - shipped from OSO Technologies.
I just got an email saying my pledge is ready to ship. Reply to the email to confirm shipping address. Don't know if this has been sent by accident, or if they are now shipping to us international backers stock they have left??
If it was sent by accident, that is just a cruel...
@Matthew, @All - SmartThings is to have integration - check the forum
If they have gone bankrupt, then their intellectual property and their existing stock is now an asset to be sold to satisfy their creditors. It is possible that it may re-emerge, but I don't think that will.
If they filed for bankruptcy, we should be able to find the case soon on Pacer ( https://www.pacer.gov/ ), but I do not have an account.
I have other devices that speak ZigBee (Almond+), but I don't have any information on what the Links speak to the base station. I am interested in anything anyone is doing with the hardware. This comment section is the only place I've found any information so far.
I see the probes have a Arm/ZigBee module (http://meshconnect.cel.com/docs/default-source/data-sheets/em35x_mini_modules_ds.pdf…). I wonder if we can get something else that speaks ZigBee to receive the probe data? There is a USB stick from the same company that makes the modules, costing about $53 at DigiKey.
I see that the website is gone now, so the system is useless. I can understand companies failing - that happens. I am baffled at the decision to keep the code or design materials secret, turning the hardware into nothing but trash, rather than let the tech savy among us at least try to get some use out of what had been a helpful system. Ok, so the code may look like crap because you were in a rush to get it out. That's ok. Just zip it up and let me try to use those sensors I relied on.
When a company goes bankrupt (like it seems to happen), at least there is a official bankrupt procedure, where the remaining assets are put together and the creditors can reclaim their part.
Instead we got Eduardo Torrealba sending an email that says "we are so sorry, we are just keeping your money" without 0 information about how many devices are left in stock, of what type, and what is going to happen to all of that and what is the actual status of OSO technologies. Obviously it is much more difficult for an international backer to seek damages so it has been very clear from the beginning who would pay the price.
No plans to open-source the design or the software or any minimal interest in making the failure a little bit less painful for anyone. No details about any of the specifics on how this could go so wrong, nor of the efforts taken to mitigate lack of funds.
If there is absolutely 0 stock left, then they already know there was no money to successfully complete the campaign many months ago when they placed the relevant orders which were well under the total number of backers.
Yes, kickstart campaigns can fail, but then at least you should answer absolutely every question and distribute the damage across all the backers, not depending on where they live. It looks like this campaign was clearly failing long ago and they took the decision to be employed on backer's funds for a few more months, and pray on heaven some money would rain on the company, at the same time they were selling international backer's devices through the shop. Gain for them, loss for everyone else. Great job!
International Backer like me have really *lost* 100$ or more to this. Wow. Haven't expected such an outcome…
Very disappointing. a lot of
promises made, none kept. Such is the Kickstarter world, We take our chances. I had high hopes for this.
Good Luck Eduardo. It's disappointing that this product failed, but a lot of success has to do with timing and sadly, this appears to have not been the right time.
Although we will not get our refunds or extra components now, I would advise to continue SmartThings integration to at least try and appease the 877 backers on here. That way, we can continue to use the equipment we have received for something.
Dear Oso Team,
more than one year and a half passed... please proceed immediately with my refund!
For how many years should I still wait for?
Can someone please advise as to the status of the money owed the international backers?
I've tried sending a message to the creator both through KS and through his blog, so far no response.
I've heard from one source that he heard from one source that OSO was dead and trying to sell off their code. Take that for what it's worth (Fourth hand info??). But again, failure to hear anything official makes one thing that there's possibly some truth to it.
Christian... there isn't, unfortunately, a lot you can do at this point. Complaints won't work because Kickstarter isn't liable. OSO did make an honest effort (at first) to make their product and many people (myself included) received it, in part. So, scam seems a bit harsh.
That said, there's no question that things went bad and they were unable to fulfill all their rewards to backers. Still, they did many promises to refund or otherwise provide an alternate reward, so I give them credit for that.
BUT... they haven't seemed to follow through on those promises. No refunds have been sent, to the best of my knowledge. And I don't think anyone who asked for an alternate reward has received it either.
This is pure speculation on my part... but I wonder if perhaps OSO was hoping that the majority of people would opt for alternate rewards, of which they supposedly have decent stock on hand.
But maybe most people opted for cash instead? And now OSO is worried about having enough funds to offer refunds so they are trying to sell their stock on hand rather than send out alternate rewards?!?
Like I said... pure speculation, but that's all we've got to go on right now because we haven't heard anything official for quite some time now.
This whole project is a scam , someone run off with our money . Does anybody know where to make a complain ?
No, no refund here yet.
Has anyone who pledge for a valve received their refund or additional links?
We could really use an update to answer some of the questions brought up. It's been 6 weeks now since we've heard from you.
A status update would be nice, still waiting for my refund...
I recall in previous update that despite the current financial situation PlantLink finds themselves in that there was outside sponsorship that was going to help keep your server up for about a year for those of us who continue to have systems actively up and running out in the field. Today my base station has gone offline (glowing red indicator vs. green) which means there may be some tech./network issue. How do you suggest I go about trying to get back online? I'm willing to put in the time to troubleshoot but need some guidance ...
I'm with Timothy... I'm not an international but a US backer who opted for more links instead of the money for the valve. Do you have stock? If so, are you sending those out to people who opted for the hardware vs. the cash?
I dont understand, you asked the international backers if we wanted a refund or to receive the device. I opted for the device, why if you have stock has this not been sent to me?
This whole project is a scam . I want my money back as promised.
So we're the international rewards sent out or not? To those that wanted it?
@Steven - Thanks for the comments.
The total amount owed to international backers is less than 20% of the amount raised in the campaign. It's enough that the company doesn't have the cash reserves to cover it out of pocket today, but hopefully not so much that Oso can't repay it over time. As I said in the update, I'm pursuing some other options for the future of the product that might speed up that process, but I can't go into detail in a public forum just yet.
Thanks again for your patience and support!
assuming that the lion's share of the refunds will go to international backers, which should represents a very small percentage of the $96,690 pledged, how much money do you actually owe us pledgers who never received the plantlinks?
Also, shouldn't you have some reserve cash being that you decided to forgo the international certification?
Perhaps most of us would be willing to settle just to recuperate a bit of the money we invested.
The last I heard was that the SmartThings - PlantLink setup will be Cloud to Cloud. So the Links will still communicate with the PL hub and then there will be communication between the PL cloud and the ST cloud for ST to get info and be able to trigger events.
Previously I'd heard that the links themselves were going to pair with the ST hub, but as I said, the latest rumor I'd heard was that it will just be cloud to cloud. Again... only rumor, so don't take it for gospel truth. It would be very nice to hear from OSO to confirm some of the details so we know what's what.
I would love to get some news about refund . Could you please give us an update.
I'm a UK backer, and am still trying to decide whether to request a refund or to have PlantLink shipped. Can we please have an update that answers the following questions:
What is the expected future of the current PlantLink devices? Will they continue to work well indefinitely?
Or will they be dependant on SmartThings, if so, what is required for SmartThings integrartion? Presumably I'd need to purchase their hub? Any downsides to using PlantLink via SmartThings?
Hey Oso-Team, is there already any timeline you are going to send the rewards to European Backers who were willing to take the risk theirselves?