Crowd FundingEditorials

How the ONO smartphone 3D printer became ‘Oh-No’

Since raising over $2 million on Kickstarter in 2016, the ONO 3D printer has left its backers increasingly concerned

Backers of the popular ONO (formerly OLO) smartphone 3D printer Kickstarter campaign have been asking, for some time now, where their rewards are and what exactly the Italian startup is up to. Since the campaign raised over $2 million in March 2016, it seems that we have just been given a handful video demonstrations, nice booths at events and a new website. Considering that the first printers were supposed to be shipped out in July 2016, questions have been raised about what the $2 million has been spent on and whether ONO 3D will ever deliver.

We’ve had our doubts about the ONO smartphone 3D printer for some time. As time drags on, it is looking more and more like the ONO smartphone 3D printers will never be delivered to all those who backed them on Kickstarter. Understandably, funders are becoming increasingly frustrated, demanding answers and/or their money back. Right now, it does not look promising. According to most comments (and there are several up to just a few hours ago), deliveries are as much as a year and a half late.

“This a joke. Delivery was expected two years ago,” says backer Mas. “I cancel my order and want a refund.”

Another backer writes:

I invoke my rights under Kickstarter’s Terms of Use:
https://www.kickstarter.com/terms-of-use/oct2012
‘Project Creators are required to fulfill all rewards of their successful fundraising campaigns or refund any Backer whose reward they do not or cannot fulfill.’
I demand a full refund for my pledge amount.

There are many more comments just like it. Too many. At the current pace of technology, a delay of two years makes the OLO-ONO a practically obsolete product in many aspects (such as lack of Bluetooth support, for example).

ONO
Never gonna get it, never gonna get it

While users are aware that funding a project’s development offers no guarantees, it seems fair to expect that over two million in funding should have resulted in something more. It does not seem like anyone is willing to accept responsibility for this epic let-down. In fact, there is even a new live website that is accepting more pre-orders for the ONO in the U.S. and Europe. The startup is also currently seeking more funding through a StartEngine equity crowdfunding campaign. (The comments on this campaign are equally critical as on Kickstarter, though ONO 3D seems more responsive on the platform.)

It seems that the project’s founders, Pietro Gabriele and Filippo Moroni, are out of their depth and have not found any way to assuage their backers’ mounting concerns. Unsurprisingly, regular live videos posted to Facebook are not quite enough to convince their backers that they’re still being taken into serious consideration.

Still, Pietro Gabriele is proudly showing off the Kickstarter campaign results on his LinkedIn account and Filippo Moroni was still presenting “the future of 3D printing with a smartphone” at an innovator’s conference in London as recently as last November. His talk was supported by nice graphics and videos so at least we know where some of the funder’s money has gone. It also went to get the protective film certified by UL. The same UL that certifies safety and health standards for powders and fumes in industrial 3D printers. However, it seems rather unlikely that UL certification of the film was at the top of most backers’ list of concerns.

The money also went to fund Maker Faire participations (Bay Area, Berlin, Rome and NYC are not exactly cheap). At one of the latest ones in New York, the team appeared quite happy to show off a functioning prototype. Getting even the interviewer Joel Telling (who’s often skeptical of big claims) quite excited about it. However, a $2.7 million (mostly) functional prototype after two years simply does not seem to cut it. Even if the material cartridges do have nice bottles.

Unfortunately, this type of scenario is becoming all too common with 3D printer Kickstarters and crowdfunding campaigns. There are many exceptions, of course, but this latest incident certainly does not help the many engineers and innovators trying to get their products off the ground with crowdfunder help. South Korea’s Team Owl Works is another company that has seriously let its backers down. The company, which promised backers a low-cost resin 3D printer and raised over $200K, has failed to respond to any concerns raised over printer deliveries and refunds. Despite Team Owl Works leader SJ Park telling us an update was imminent over a month ago, the last update on Kickstarter was January 12th.

Tags

Davide Sher

Since 2002, I have built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, I spent 12 years in the United States, where I received my Bachelor of Arts undergraduate degree. As a journalist covering the tech industry - especially the videogame industry - for over 10 years, I began covering the AM industry specifically in 2013, as blogger. In 2016 I co-founded London-based 3D Printing Business Media Ltd. (now 3dpbm) which operates in marketing, editorial, and market analysis & consultancy services for the additive manufacturing industry. 3dpbm publishes 3D Printing Business Directory, the largest global directory of companies related to 3DP, and leading news and insights websites 3D Printing Media Network and Replicatore. I am also a Senior Analyst for leading US-based firm SmarTech Analysis focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets.

Related Articles

5 Comments

  1. Man, 6 days before the first small batch is delivered. How’s that egg taste? Click bait journalism…always good for a chuckle

  2. T3D is also propelling their cell phone 3D printer on Kickstarter. In 2015, analysts Taiwan Tech manufactured a smaller 3D printer that utilizations light from a cell phone to fix sap material. The idea was displayed only a couple of months after the OLO 3D printer initially surfaced on Kickstarter.

  3. Creating a printer this big obviously reasons large tolerance values and decrease accuracy. however, the BEAST seems to excel in this location as properly, with the best layer decision of much less than 50 microns, and a Z-positioning accuracy of most effective 1.25 microns. That’s very remarkable for a printer that could produce items that attain as much as 141 liters of extent.

We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By agreeing you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.

Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • PHPSESSID
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Accept all Services
Close
Close

STAY AHEAD

OF THE CURVE

Join industry leaders and receive the latest insights on what really matters in AM!

This information will never be shared with 3rd parties

I’ve read and accept the privacy policy.*

WELCOME ON BOARD!