Most Kickstarter Projects Fail to Deliver on Time
If you contribute to a Kickstarter project, don’t expect to see the finished product in a timely manner.
Of the top 50 most-funded Kickstarter projects, a whopping 84 percent missed their target delivery dates, according to an analysis conducted by CNNMoney.
When CNN contacted the creators of the 50 highest-funded campaigns, all of which boasted estimated deliver dates of Nov. 2012 or earlier, the site found that only eight of them hit their deadline. Sixteen hadn’t even shipped yet, while the remaining 26 projects left the warehouse months late.
The most delayed project, according to CNNMoney’s data set, was ZPM Espresso’s home espresso machine, which is nine months overdue, and now has an expected ship date of mid-2013.
Though Kickstarter proudly focuses on artistic clients, most of the site’s top-funded projects fall into the tech, design, and video game categories — often the most time-consuming ventures. CNNMoney noted, however, that many of these projects did not expect to earn as much money as they did, ultimately requiring them to produce more products and push back ship dates.
“In the first 24 hours, everyone is happy and slapping your hand,” Brendan Iribe, CEO of virtual reality headset design company Oculus Rift, told CNNMoney. “And 48 hours later, the reality sets in. There’s a bit of fear: We’re going to have to make all of these.”
Originally intending to launch its product last month, Oculus Rift is now aiming for a March 2013 shipping date.
Still, some tech projects made it out on time, including MaKey MaKey, a circuit keyboard that turns any electrically conductive object, including a banana, into a link to a PC. Having raised more than $568,100, MaKey MaKey met its August estimated delivery time.
Additionally, CloudFTP, a plug-in adapter that connects to any USB storage device and wirelessly transmits content to other mobile devices, shipped on time in February, raising more than $262,350. The last of the tech-related projects that made its Oct. 2012 shipment deadline was CineSkates, a $486,518 project that built portable tripods with wheels.
Most of the worst offenders, as calculated by CNNMoney, are video games, software, or mobile accessories that range in estimated delivery dates of March to Nov. 2012. Check out the full chart online.
Kickstarter made headlines earlier this year when it said that it leaves money issues to the backers and the project creators, even if the project fails. The controversy, however,prompted Kickstarter to tighten its rules and ban product renderings or simulations. Kickstarter projects can now only show images of how the product looks right now, not how it might appear once funding has been secured.
One big Kickstarter project getting ready to ship is the Android-based Ouya console. The company said that a dev version of the console will start shipping on Dec. 28, and it recently started allowing users to sign up for their official Ouya usernames. For more, see PCMag’sinterview with Ouya founder Julie Uhrman.
Also check out PCMag’s Q&A with Kickstarter co-founder Yancey Strickler. Also, check out the slideshow above of Cool Kickstarter Projects.
For more from Stephanie, follow her on Twitter @smlotPCMag.