Yeah, great price if they deliver. But a few things concern me:
1. As far as I can tell, there is absolutely no name publicly associated with Veetron. Even on Indiegogo, under the "profile" section, there is no mention of the person running this company. Likewise, several of Veetron's comments on Indiegogo reference the "team" that put this scooter together. Yet, there's zero evidence that this project involves more than a single person. No names, no pictures, nothing. I honestly can't think of a single crowdfunding campaign I've ever looked at where the people running it were completely, 100% anonymous.
2. The Veetron website has a private registration. Here too, whoever Veetron's owner is, he apparently does not
want you to know. I find that a little odd. More than a little odd, actually.
3. I sent an email to Veetron four days ago, simply and honestly asking who runs the company and what their address is. I straight-up told them that I was just doing my "due diligence" before plunking down $500. But I never heard a peep back from them. Apparently they'd rather not get my $500, than let me know who they are. Weird. Is this an electric scooter or a Silk Road product?!?
4. There are mentions and/or "reviews" of the VOMO on several obscure tech websites. Most of these were paid placements (i.e., "advertorials"). Although when the Veetron Facebook page mentions these, they conveniently "forget" to mention that these are paid ads and not real, legit media coverage.
5. The campaign end-date was supposed to be July 19. Then it got bumped to August 1. "Due to great demand", of course.
Then a couple days ago, the campaign end-date was again
moved to August 16. Part of establishing crowdfunding credibility is sticking to your deadline dates. When the goalpost keeps being moved, that starts to create credibility problems. And as recently as 3 days ago, Veetron said they were "...in the process of accumulating components from suppliers". But they said the exact same thing over a month ago. Yet they also say they're going to be shipping completed models in just 3 more weeks? I know how the supply chain works in China, and nothing
happens that fast. I fully expect that by the end of August, people won't have been shipped anything, and the excuses from Veetron will start to flow like cheap wine.
6. That $349 price still strikes me as "too good to be true". I don't see how you design, test, produce and market this scooter for $349 and still make money. I may check in with Jay over at EcoReco and get this thoughts. Jay will know exactly how much it costs to bring a scooter like this to market. And knowing those figures, I suspect he may also be skeptical. I'm glad I can
contact Jay, owing to the fact he isn't afraid to be associated with his business.
7. There have been a number of Indiegogo (and to a lesser extent Kickstarter) campaigns recently where tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars have been raised, before the campaign creator simply vanishes with the cash. Interestingly, many of these fraudulent campaigns originate from China and Hong Kong.
You might say I'm being overly paranoid or overly cynical. And you might very well be correct! But I dunno...I have a bad feeling about this one. Remember, when you decide to fund a product that doesn’t yet exist, you’re essentially placing a bet on the people behind that product. So who are you betting on here? That's just it...you don't even know.
I started my career 20 years ago as a prosecutor, and during my first few years in practice I developed something of a "sixth sense" or "gut feeling" that proved to be eerily accurate. When I was working a case and several things didn't add up, I was often the first of my colleagues to notice. With Veetron, I'm getting that same feeling.
I very much hope I'm wrong here. I really do, because I want one of these scooters too! But I'm going to wait, and pay $150 more in the event Veetron surprises me and actually brings this to market. Right now however I'm getting a bad feeling about it. Especially because of the fact that whoever is behind this campaign adamantly doesn't want you to know who he is, or precisely where he's located.
That's a red flag I can't get over.