[Marketing] Ideas / Plan

Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at goldelico.com
Fri Dec 30 20:48:03 CET 2011

Hi Gerald, Ed (I try to merge thoughts a little...)

Am 30.12.2011 um 19:22 schrieb Ed Kapitein:

> On 12/30/2011 06:59 PM, Gerald A wrote:
>> On Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 9:12 AM, Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller <hns at goldelico.com> wrote:
>> The other strategy is the one taken by Apple. They have a very low
>> marketing budget compared to other companies. And the media are
>> still happy to report every small move at no cost...
>> ... which is because Apple is super secretive, so even "rumors" become big news.
>> While this is a great strategy, it becomes difficult to achieve if you are trying to have everything "open".
>> What I think is lost in all of this is the question: Who is the intended customer?

Currently: those who own a GTA01 and GTA02 or are willing to give it away.

There are approx. 18000 units out there waiting for a potential upgrade to a
GTA04 board. And we just have 56 group tour orders within 6 weeks. This is
0,3 %...

>> I've seen some people talk about linux geeks, etc etc. However, at least for the first rev of the GTA04,
>> it's _hardware_ geeks, and hardcore ones at that, which is the focus.

Not necessarily. The hardware is done and has almost been proven to work.

There may be bugs inside we will learn about only in the future, but there is a core
team to iron this out. Not the community nor the owner has to do that.

The main complaint with the GTA01 and GTA02 was that the processor is very
slow and the Glamo is crap. And, there is no UMTS. And it has no USB 2.0.

Now we finally have the GTA04: a motherboard replacement just doing
that with 800 MHz Arm-Cortex A8, 3D graphics accelerator, integrated DSP
coprocessor, and 14 MBit UMTS. Ready to be used by the linux geeks...

So it is a solution to the main complaints with the GTA01/02.

>> There are lots of unix-heads that would love a phone that is "free-er" then Android or Apple let you be.
>> But having to buy a phone, then cannibalize it with another kit you buy? It's definitely outside the

>> mainstream.

Only those who don't own a GTA01 or GTA02 yet have to buy something
(either a used GTA01/02 or hopefully soon a case kit).

All others don't really have a reason to keep their GTA01/02 and have a
GTA04 in parallel.

>> Now, it's not that I don't want this project to succeed. I think it's a great cause -- I was one of the early
>> GTA01 (neo) buyers.
>> For me, I don't have time right now to assemble a Freerunner and a GTA04 to get a working phone
>> "with possibilities". I want the completed package, then end result. The neo was shipped with the slogan

This takes approx. 15 minutes. Rarely more. And we have an installation service if you don't want to
DIY (I would appreciate if there will come up local resellers or hacking groups in your area).

>> "some assembly required", which gave you the right idea. I thought that it just needed a good software
>> stack to make things great. (I still do).

There is a lot of progress towards this. Neil Brown has almost everything working in a Linux 3.2 kernel.

And QtMoko brings almost everything to the User Interface. So what is missing? Just some weeks of
ironing out the final bugs. And more OS options to be ported. If the developers keep the speed (these
activities did not start before October this year!), it will be perfect when the Group Tour devices are ready to ship...

>> What might work is having people invest, rather then "buy" something. That's something I could wrap
>> my head around. "Make the open phone happen -- Invest now". Don't make it complicated or expensive.
>> "$10 in one 'block'" kind of thing. Maybe 40 blocks would allow the "investor" to see a completed phone,
>> if one was to ever be produced. Make the risks clear -- the "open phone" might never come to market,
>> but if we get 5000 blocks sold, we then have the muscle to negotiate with the big boys.
>> The issue here is what is in it for the "little guy", and I'd be a bit fuzzy. 40 blocks gets a phone, but
>> what if I buy 2? Do I get the use of a phone for a week? :P I also don't know the legal side of calling
>> it an "investment" (rather then a donation or a purchase). But this would be simpler to "market", and
>> would have better funding potential then selling the kit.
>> As an aside -- if I have extra cash, I might be willing to buy a kit or two -- but they would either end up
>> as donations to others, or as a dust collector. So it's not that I'm not willing to put money into it. But 
>> I also realize that one or two more kits won't make this happen in isolation.

Well, to me it looks as if you own a GTA01 that is not used? Maybe you could think about donating
it to someone who urgently wants to have a new case for a GTA04?

>> Thanks
> My thoughts too, set up a kind of micro credit, where people can lent money, lets say 100 euro, and  with that money build the phones.
> Once the phones are made, more developers can develop different aspects of the phone and people will see the GTA04 become more mature.

> I think success stories with video clips on youtube will convince more people to buy a GTA04 then good stories on paper.
> And the microcreditters can either get their money back once all phones are sold, or can get a 110 euro discount when they buy a GTA04.
> Just my thoughts..
> Kind regards,
> Ed
> PS
> i guess you must be Dutch to come up with a micro credit plan in west-europe ;-)

Well, the problem is not to get a credit to produce the devices in advance. 

The problem is that every credit must be paid back after a while.

And the only way to do that, is that someone finally buys the hardware at the
price that it costs (plus a premium for the credit!).

If nobody finally wants to upgrade to GTA04, a (micro-)credit doesn't help...

So we should not ask one group to take the risk and others to take the GTA04.

But what about this idea: Group Tour orders with partial payment.

The key reason for the hard deadline is that we must order some components in
big batches (mainly Memory, CPU, UMTS modules, PCBs). E.g. making 4 orders
100 chips each is much more expensive than ordering 400 in a single batch.
And it may be even impossible to get anything smaller than a minimum batch
size defined by the chip manfacturer or distributor.

Now the idea could be that it is only necessary to collect let's say 250 EUR until
the deadline. This is sort of a credit that we really can order the critical components
mentioned above. Then, the subscribers have some more time (e.g. up to 6 months)
to collect and pay the remaining money. And we produce on demand (production
in smaller batches is also a little more expensive but the effect is smaller than for
components and PCBs)

What do those of you think, who still hesitate to subscribe to the group tour to upgrade
your existing GTA01 or GTA02?


PS: Taking too much credit is what the Greek state did do wrong. They are no
longer able to pay back neither the interest rates nor the credit without subscribing
to another credit.

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