Funded! This project was successfully funded on November 18, 2011.

Update #24

SURVEY: Level Setting and Next Steps

Hello Backers,

Some of you have received your i+Case and we know that some people are seeing signal issues and others are not.  We are trying to get a sense of the extent of this issue, as well as some other questions through a survey to help with our next steps.

This is also to remind people about what KickStarter is about.  KickStarter is about investing/backing a product or idea and funding that idea.  When you fund the idea there are "rewards" involved for that investment.  Backers are not "purchasing" anything, but merely given a "gift/reward" for helping fund the project.  That's the way I understand KickStarter's crowd funding model. 

Keep in mind that start-ups often don't succeed the first go-round, or there are bugs with the first production run, first release, etc. This obviously wasn't our intention and isn't the intent of any start-up. This is however fairly typical.   The initial funding served to help us build the first production run, purchase materials, redesign some parts, and test the new application of the logo design, as well as many other things.  During this process we've learned a ton and are going to take these learnings and continue to refine the product to help address any real issues that exist.  

There are certain backers asking for refunds on their "rewards".  Personally, I don't think this is a reasonable request given the parameters in which KickStarter is set up, outlined above.  When you make an investment, whether it's a start-up, a stock or Kickstarter you can't back out when things get a little hairy and hope to reclaim your investment.  There is inherent risk to any investment. I'll provide two examples that come to mind when I think of this.  

1. If I invest in a stock for $100 and it goes down to $50, I can't call my broker and ask that I get my$50 back that I lost because the stock did poorly.  

2. There are many investors that throw 10's of Millions of dollars at start-ups and as I've stated most start-ups don't get it right the first time. When that happens, those investor don't/can't ask for their money back. That's not how funding start-ups work. Often times they will actually invest more because they still believe in the idea.

I've also been delivered a product that didn't work and actually caused the screen of the phone to break. But I chalked it up to helping the team realize their product and take it to the next phase. In no-way did I expect a refund.  I communicated the issue to them and moved on. Does it suck that it didn't work as expected? Of course. Does it suck that some of your are seeing signal issues. Yes, we aren't saying it doesn't. 

Don't take these statements as excuses or being arrogant or ignoring backers or any problems that may exist. I'm merely outlining what happens in most start-ups and how it parallels to what we are running into. We also aren't maliciously keeping things from any one and haven't "run-away" to the South Pacific with the funds.  If we are silent that means there is nothing new to report and we are still working on things. No one is being ignored.  

Some other notes:

Everyone that makes a comment or post may not be a friendly backer. They may be a competitor or someone with different motivations.  So, I recommend you read the comments with a grain of salt.  I say this because the team can't reproduce the signal dropping from full bars to one or zero that was reported. So it would be great if backers posted any videos of issues, the environment they are in, etc, to help us understand the true severity of this. 

Even the best in the business have problems.  How often do you hear about a recall with a major car company, or Apple or Samsung having hardware issues. Even the seasoned professionals have problems.  There are obvious differences between making a phone, a car, and an iPhone case, but the point I'm trying to illustrate is that not even the best in the business get it right and also run into issues. And they have long been out of start-up mode. I hope this helps provide people a little perspective. 

After we get our survey results we'll determine next steps for the project and share those with our backers. Right now, we are still looking at new designs and materials that may address the signal issues. Exploration of new materials and processes isn't a quick process.  

Thanks for everyone's help.  Without your backing we wouldn't be we are today with our product, for better or worse. 

SURVEY >> https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BJVCV2M

Thanks

Jason & Chung

Comments

    1. Missing_small

      Creator Neil Lewinski on January 16, 2012

      If anyone is interested in a discount on a mint condition red i+case, let me know,

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      Creator Olivier on January 10, 2012

      Give some more information please, we want to know what is happening on this moment.

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      Creator Enric on January 10, 2012

      I didn't recive my case yet. Want know when i will get my case?

    4. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Marc Glave on January 9, 2012

      Are there any shipping or delivery updates?

    5. Missing_small

      Creator Greg Moore (deleted) on January 9, 2012

      When will I get my case.

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      Creator Paultart on January 9, 2012

      I am still looking forward to receiving my case.

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      Creator Stephen Arnold on January 9, 2012

      I'm anxiously awaiting my 2 cases, and look forward to testing signal strength, etc, to hopefully help you guys narrow in on any possible problems (or reaffirming the product quality) before the hopeful retail release. It'd be great to pick one up in an Apple store for friends and family next Christmas!

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      Creator i+Case on January 8, 2012

      Thanks Vic. Appreciate the words. As long as we are failing forward that's ok by me.

      Some people aren't as open minded as you are about this project and it's great to hear some positive words amongst the negative, but that's typically how it goes. You'll have your cases soon.

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      Creator Victor Mohoney on January 8, 2012

      Hi Jason and Chung

      For better or worse I support your initiative. Even Steve Jobs failed (again and again) before nailing it. This will be one of the most beneficial experiences you will ever encounter once you get beyond the fire storm. Hang in there, learn from your mistakes as this is what separates men from boys. Please ship my three cases as originally conceived and when you hit the big time they will be cherished collector items. When the going gets tuff... Vic Mohoney

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      Creator Salsa77 on January 7, 2012

      I still have not recieved anything and not even an email from anyone!!!

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      Creator Dmitry on January 5, 2012

      @Jason, Please do not send the cases to me, if you did not solve the signal loss problem.
      I don,t need the unworking case and would prefer a refund.
      Regards

    12. Odd.small

      Creator Rian on January 4, 2012

      @Peter K. That is exactly what I am afraid of. So far what I have read from these updates, designers are not obliged to excel on creating and sending better cases, since the case itself is only a "reward" for backing such an awesome project. Another problem is, if they are planning to change or modify the design, are they willing to ship modified case for those who have received defective ones? This update simply doesn't answer any of the possible questions that might rise from the backers.

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      Creator i+Case on January 3, 2012

      @ALL update 21 outlines our planned shipping schedule

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      Creator Rob Wise on January 3, 2012

      I have not yet received a case just checking when we can expect shipping

    15. Missing_small

      Creator Hein Mevissen on January 3, 2012

      When are the cases shipped?

    16. Missing_small

      Creator Peter Kim on January 2, 2012

      So, for those that haven't received a case yet what exactly is going to happen? Are we getting the so called "defective" "signal losing" cases or a redesigned one? Also, does this mean more delays? As an international backer I haven't really heard too much except that our group was being bumped back. An update on what you guys are actually going to do would be nice instead of explanations to people's complaints.

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      Creator Matthew Lew on January 1, 2012

      I got my case, and it's awesome. However, it's completely unusable since none of my auxiliary or headphones will fit now with the way that the top of the case is designed. Very frustrating.

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      Creator Olivier on December 30, 2011

      I hope I will get it, because 75 dollar is a lot for me... I'm just a student

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      Creator Salsa77 on December 30, 2011

      I have been waiting to and still nothing. They did'nt explain who was getting it first and for which reason.

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      Creator Olivier on December 28, 2011

      I really want to know when my i+Case will be start shipping? I am waiting for more then 3 months know...

    21. Odd.small

      Creator Rian on December 26, 2011

      I guess I am the only one who stands in the point, thinking that this whole project so far has showed no uses of "good funding." I agree, by the way, the essential ideas and principals of kickstarter, and that is why I am backing many projects. I want to see the projects I funded to literally 'kick-start.'

      Now here is the problem. Designers apparently have failed to come up with practical design that will associate with iPhone as a case. As a backer, I have wanted backers to solve the problem, prior to post their project on Kickstarter. And if they have not, then since they have fund to develop and test their ideas, they were supposed have it fixed by now.

      Having a commercial item that is about to be launched in market as a reward is merely a result of coincidence. However as a backer of this project, if the project or idea is not practical, I would have not funded this project. Because it will never 'kick-start.' Reward does not need to be perfect. I agree on that point, but if we cannot see the results of our financial funding.... only word I can come up with to explain this whole situation is a "FRAUD."

      I shall wait till designers to come up with solutions. I did not buy the product, I backed it up! Now again, as a backer, and by own nature of kickstater, I shall consider this as an attempt to scam the backers. "Even the best business" could have problems, but usually entrepreneur start gathering backers as soon as the whole project becomes real. And if the testing is required, entrepreneur must state that some of the funds will go in to testing. Have the designers ever stated such?

      Now that designers acknowledged that i+Case is no longer practical, what would they come up with? R&D till next year for another version of i+Case? None of the backers have funded the project that will need longer 2 years, that needs more than 12 months of testing. Even so, there was no descriptions of such time frames.

      I have funded the project, that will need my and the others' money to start the lines set-up and practice real-time business prior to enter the market. Having a problem with shipping, packaging, those are very understandable. But this, that the product itself is not practical, and therefore needs more time to develop it, is different. THIS IS A FRAUD. We have never been told such facts.

    22. Kickstarter%20profile%20pic.small

      Creator JR Sanchez on December 24, 2011

      Guys,
      Just let Jason and Chung do there thing. Really, it's not like they're trying to send out a bad product. The better their product is the more chances it has to get into a retail store. So obviously they're trying send out the best case they can make.

      Think of the iPhone 4's signal. It cost Apple millions of dollars to redesign the new antenna for iPhone 4S. They didn't intend to ship out the iPhone 4 with bad reception. Lab testing and real world testing is very different. They can't get millions of people to test out their product before launch, it just doesn't makes sense. Same thing here, Jason and Chung couldn't get thousands of people to test it out before they shipped the cases.

      As a project creator myself I completely agree that backers that want a refund should not get one. Everyone including the project creator is taking a risk. I'm sure that Jason in Chung spent a couple of thousand dollars of their own money before they posted their project. There should be a Kickstarter agreement for backers letting them know the risk they are taking.

      Jason and Chung, keep up the good work don't let those people slow you down.

      JR

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      Creator Vince on December 24, 2011

      @ Dave
      I expect no refund. Im simply requesting

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      Creator Richard L Shoop on December 24, 2011

      Considering the machine work involved, I'm not surprised that there are issues. I knew there would be delays involved. I'm not worried. All things take a certain level of trial and error.

      Thanks for the up date

      Richard

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      Creator Olivier on December 24, 2011

      Hey, sorry for asking, but when will you start shipping the next load? I'm living in Belgium and I really would like my i+case. Greets Olivier

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      Creator Alex Mackenzie on December 24, 2011

      Agreed. Non-apple headphones do not fit. I understand there has been a range of responses regarding signal strength, but a simple flaw like this (along with jiggly buttons) would seem to be the death knell for this product if not immediately fixed. Fortunately, it does't seem to be too complicated a fix.

      I just wanted to make a comment on your most recent email. Let me preface this with emphasizing that I absolutely understand the intent of Kickstarter, and that you are working hard to perfect the product. However, please don't confuse backers with investors. Your two analogies about investing in companies simply do not apply here. No backer is purchasing an equity interest in your company. Regardless of the altruism of each backer, we all wanted the opportunity to own what appeared to be an elegantly designed iPhone case. We are not investors - we are consumers. So, you asking us to have patience / understanding when a sub-par product is delivered is pretty tough to swallow, since we have no longer-term contract or investment with you. Of course, we as backers knew of this risk from the start, which is what makes Kickstarter an exciting experience.

      I'm not asking for my money back, but I just wish you had been working on the actual functionality of this case instead of testing, emailing and polling us about the finish of your logo.

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      Creator Jim Kelly on December 24, 2011

      I don't know how anyone can see that message as arrogant, to long or that it takes any kind of negative tone. I get angry at these namby pamby backers and the tone they take. This message was on point for a project that has experienced a problems and is dealing with negative feedback. It was totally appropriate to send exactly this message at this time. To the rest of you negative backers... steer clear of Kickstarter if you can't handled the basic premise of the site. Let these guys get on with engineering their products.

    28. Missing_small

      Creator Mike on December 24, 2011

      Hello,
      My iphone 4s has not had any noticeable drop in network.
      My primary complaints are regarding cables. All my non-apple headphones will not fit; and half of my charge cables are no longer clicking in as per the top and bottom are just a hair's width too tight.
      The latter wouldn't bother me so much if the case wasn't bolted on.

    29. Missing_small

      Creator Ben K-B on December 23, 2011

      Thanks for your comment and again I appreciate you candidness.
      Best of luck with the next big push of i-cases out into the wild.

    30. Screen%20shot%202012-01-13%20at%209.15.18%20am.small

      Creator i+Case on December 23, 2011

      @Mike - Yep, we tried a ton of things. Check out update 23 that shows some of these, one which included drilling holes in the case. We are going to keep exploring. Thanks for your support.

    31. Missing_small

      Creator Mike Morris on December 23, 2011

      I got my case and it looks great. Experiencing signal issues and complete loss of signal where I always had it using plastic cases. Running iPhone 4 on ATT. I thought your update was appropriate and in line with the message you are trying to get across. Not offended or feeling talked down to. I am disappointed, but want to see this work as a viable product long term. I haven't kept up to date on all of the updates, but I am aware of the signal issues. I am wondering if you all have tried drilling holes in the sides of the case to see if that improves signal strength. At this point, my case is useless to me and would be willing to send it back for some additional machining if you think that drilling or slotting the case side improves signal strength.
      Mike

    32. Screen%20shot%202012-01-13%20at%209.15.18%20am.small

      Creator i+Case on December 23, 2011

      @BenK-B 7 - We appreciate the thoughtful feedback. I'm not going to write a ton here because I'm exhausted, but will say this. The goal of this update was to ONE - deal with the squeaky wheels, but TWO- also to do some proactive damage control for those that haven't received their cases. Keep in mind we've only sent ~200 cases and will send out ~1000 more in little over a week. So I wanted to mitigate any potential backlash as best we could. Hope that helps some.

    33. Missing_small

      Creator Ben K-B on December 23, 2011

      I for one have appreciate the frank nature of these updates. However, this recent update does feel a little too heavy handed and I feel compelled to comment. I can understand that in any project like this you will have bumps and blips along the way and you will always have squeaky wheels that will make unrealistic demands. Unfortunately its the sqeaky wheels that usually demand your attention. That is something has been apparent to me through my selling career on eBay. I think the majority of backers are behind you guys 100% and know that you are working hard to make this a big success.

      I get the feeling that this update is directed at a handful of people and is probably better suited to a direct message. Perhaps that feel that they didnt get what they expected or maybe they just cant stand the idea of loosing any signal . Regardless, I dont think a blanket email like this to all of your backers really sets a good tone for you guys and future projects. It does make some pretty broad assumptions.

      I think it is a bit of a slippery slope to suggest that everyone backing your project understands that it is a gift and "reward" situation. Or that is is simply a "stock-like"gamble that may or maynot pay off. People are pledging in order to receive a product that they're excited about. To qoute the pledge button-
      With a $65 pledge you will be pre-ordering a first edition i+Case in the color of your choice.

      So ... in the spirit of this project I hope you hear this feedback as it is intended...
      As an industrial designer and first time backer I look forward to receiving my case and know (per your thorough updates) that I will be happy to be a part of this fantastic process that is kick starter.

    34. 919697517.small

      Creator San Sargin on December 23, 2011

      I second that Jason, and agree with you on the refund issue. Every project on kickstarter is a gamble from the very moment of its inception. You people aren't buying anything, you are helping fund an idea, with the promise of compensation if it's successful. You technically are not entitled to a refund for a product that doesn't meet your expectations any more than you would be entitled to a refund of a losing lottery ticket. You are basically pledging money on an untested product that may or may not live up to its promise. If you don't like it, maybe think a little bit harder before you fund the next one. As for his "tone or attitude". Put yourself in his shoes for a second. These guys aren't dell, apple or hp, they are two guys who had a vision of a neat product. One which is now facing a problem and instead of any kind of support they are instead being harassed at every turn by a bunch of whiners complaining about every little thing. Well how about you design a product from the ground up, go through all the research and development out of your own pocket (and it was out of their own pockets as your pledge doesn't give them anything till sometime after the deadline) and then have close to 1000 children bitch to you about everything from a barely audible noise to the damn color of a logo not to mention a serous problem that can actually make or break their dream and then let's see you answer each reply with roses and sugar cookies. Grow up people

    35. Screen%20shot%202012-01-13%20at%209.15.18%20am.small

      Creator i+Case on December 23, 2011

      @Jonathan and Ben - You may not be interested in the details, but many backers are and I can't please everyone. So I provide more detail than less to help add any color I can. Secondly, it's really hard for me to see this as being "offensive" and "talking down" when I clearly stated "this isn't meant to sound arrogant". Lastly, I've had three people, a friend and colleague read the message, edited it twice. And guess what? They didn't feel it was talking down, too long, or offensive. My responses will never please everyone and out messages will never be perfect. There are 1000 of you out there. So, we appreciate the feedback.

    36. Ben-head-avatar.small

      Creator Ben Edwards on December 23, 2011

      +1 Jonathan. I found the tone and length of the message offensive. Just tell us there are issues and this is an investment in a project. We'll get it. Lose the attitude.

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      Creator Jonathan Linton on December 23, 2011

      Is it me or are the tone of these emails rediculous. Why are you speaking down to us like we are three years old. We are the ones that made this happen. Change you f*cking tone. Be happy that you have our money to develop this product. Yes ppl are going to have issues with new products but handle those comments with class. If the tone of these notes continues I want out ASAP. I look forward to your response ASAP.

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      Creator Dave on December 23, 2011

      I agree and completely understand. I was not purchasing a product. I was donating money to back a project, and was given a reward - which just happens to be the product. If it turns out to be worthless junk, I'll be bummed, but certainly wouldn't expect a refund.
      Anyone that expects a refund clearly shouldn't be backing anything on kickstarter.

      P.S. Vince (above) is way out of line expecting a refund - imho.

    39. Missing_small

      Creator Vince on December 23, 2011

      I am requesting a refund because I backed the project after it had far reached its goal of $15,000. Since then the project has gone too a total of 85k. This isn't stocks and if it were I could still get my $50 back. I apologies for giving you a run around of sorts, but I 'backed' this projects to receive the gift and I backed it after it didn't need anymore backing. So in a nut shell I purchased for what you could offer. If you don't wish to give me a full refund that is fine. I will happily lower my donation to $5 or $1 dollar because the i+case is still a fantastic looking case, but I myself have found better alternatives for it.

      If you can mange I would like to lower my donation too $1 and in doing so cancel my gift.

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      Creator i+Case on December 23, 2011

      @Victoria please try again. thanks

    41. Missing_small

      Creator Victoria Robinson on December 23, 2011

      We can't complete the survey if we haven't received the case (Q3 requires an answer to which none apply to me as I haven't received the case). I'm still keen to receive the cases for the amount I backed and understand it was a 'backing' and not a 'purchase'. If it works it works, but if it doesn't - no big deal really!!

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      Creator i+Case on December 23, 2011

      @Travis done...

    43. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator TravisG on December 23, 2011

      Can I suggest for the survey to ask which phone (4/4S) and which carrier they are using. That might be a factor to who is and isn't experiencing the reception problem.

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