That Meizu Zero phone with no buttons or ports was just a big tease

It raised less than half its crowdfunding goal, and now the CEO says it was just a research project.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography, PCs and laptops, gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin
Meizu Zero

Chinese phone-maker Meizu made a big splash when it launched its Zero "True Holeless Phone" on Indiegogo on Jan. 30 with offers of 100 "Engineer Units" for $1,299 each and a single "Pioneer Unit" for $2,999. Now it's marked as a closed campaign showing it reached only $46,000 of the $100,000 goalm and its CEO told fans on Meizu's forum that "We never intended to mass-produce this project."

Translated, his statement reads, "This crowdfunding is carried out by the marketing department. The nonporous mobile phone is only a preresearch project of the development department. We never intended to mass-produce this project." 

That flies in the face of what we were told before the campaign launched -- that it would be a real product that would go on sale -- and the company seeded review units, too.

But floating crowdfunding campaigns as trial balloons to judge interest in a product is a popular marketing tool these days, and the two limited, expensive options with their aggressive April delivery date do lend credence to the idea that the whole thing is still a work in progress.

Meizu didn't immediately respond to a request for clarification.

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