Chinese phone-maker Meizu made a big splash when it launched its"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.