So ends a crazy month. We’ve broken records, we’ve been written and talked about across the world, we’ve worn out our F5 keys, and we’ve learned a lot of invaluable lessons about crowdfunding. Our bold campaign to build a visionary new device ultimately fell short, but we can take away so many positives.
We raised $12,809,906, making the Edge the world’s biggest ever fixed crowdfunding campaign. Let’s not lose sight of what an achievement that is. Close to 20,000 people believed in our vision enough to contribute hundreds of dollars for a phone months in advance, just to help make it happen. It wasn’t just individuals, either: Bloomberg LP gave $80,000 and several smaller businesses contributed $7,000 each. Thank you all for getting behind us.
Then there’s the Ubuntu community. Many of you gave your time as well as money, organising your own mailing lists, social media strategies and online ads, and successfully reaching out to your local media. We even saw entire sites created to gather information and help promote the Edge. We’ll be contacting our biggest referrers personally.
Most importantly, the big winner from this campaign is Ubuntu. While we passionately wanted to build the Edge to showcase Ubuntu on phones, the support and attention it received will still be a huge boost as other Ubuntu phones start to arrive in 2014. Thousands of you clearly want to own an Ubuntu phone and believe in our vision of convergence, and rest assured you won’t have much longer to wait.
All of the support and publicity has continued to drive our discussions with some major manufacturers, and we have many of the world’s biggest mobile networks already signed up to the Ubuntu Carrier Advisory Group. They’ll have been watching this global discussion of Ubuntu and the need for innovation very closely indeed. Watch this space!
As for crowdfunding, we believe it’s a great way to give consumers a voice and to push for more innovation and transparency in the mobile industry. And who knows, perhaps one day we’ll take everything we’ve learned from this campaign -- achievements and mistakes -- and try it all over again.
Thank you all
Mark Shuttleworth, the Ubuntu Edge team and everyone at Canonical
P.S. We’ve been assured by Paypal that all refunds will be processed within five working days.
We’re into the last 48 hours! You’ve all been fantastic, keeping the conversation going from the initial launch rush right through to this final push.
In the last few days we’ve had the Thunderclap, which co-ordinated 1,848 tweets and Facebook posts about the Edge to go out simultaneously to your hundreds of thousands of people.
CNET UK went hands-on with the Edge and Ubuntu for Android here in the Canonical offices, coming away with a very positive impression.
And we got an unexpected boost from Ubuntu user Stephen Fry, who pledged for an Edge and urged his 6 million Twitter followers to do the same. Thanks Stephen!
There’s still time to get involved, so let’s give it one final push and see how much we can add to that amazing total.
The Ubuntu Edge team
Ubuntu Edge enters the record books!
The big record has been broken!
This morning the Ubuntu Edge passed the $10,266,845 raised by the Pebble smartwatch to become the world’s biggest ever fixed crowdfunding campaign. Over 14,500 Ubuntu Edges have been pledged for -- and there’s still just under a week left to add to that total.
It’s a fantastic achievement and you’ve all played your part, so thank you!
The top contributing nations
1. United States
2. United Kingdom
NEW: Enterprise Starter Kit
We’ve added a new perk for smaller businesses looking to back the Ubuntu Edge. The Enterprise Starter Kit gets you 10 phones, along with access to an online workshop and 14 days of online support, for $7,000.
Support the Thunderclap
It’s important that we all keep sharing the campaign, and one of our Ubuntu Edge contributors has set up a Thunderclap. It co-ordinates a large group of social media users to all spread a message at exactly the same time for maximum effect. It’s all automated, so it would be great if as many of you as possible could support the Ubuntu Edge Thunderclap.
The Ubuntu Edge team
A message from Mark Shuttleworth
Thanks in large part to all of you, the Ubuntu Edge campaign response has been incredible. In just over three weeks more than 20,000 people have backed the project, from individuals giving a single dollar right up to Bloomberg’s fantastic $80,000 contribution. Along the way we’ve broken crowdfunding records, including the fastest project to hit $2 million (7hrs 59mins), and the highest ever 24-hour total ($3.45 million). We’re now on the verge of an even bigger milestone as we approach the all-time crowdfunding record of $10.27 million.
Speaking both personally and for the team, the more time we spend on this project, the more excited we get about the possibilities of this new class of device. And as the news has spread we’ve seen industry thought leaders coming round to the idea that convergence can be a real force, and that this project represents a new way to underwrite innovation.
That led to some significant engagements with suppliers that enabled us to drop the price below $700, without compromising the specification. And now that we’ve seen next-generation phones from other major names, we think the price-performance of the Edge is off the charts -- it offers real value. We’re even more convinced that it will take a new approach to unlock the next wave of mobile innovation.
Whatever happens in the next nine days, the Ubuntu Edge is already making a difference. This campaign lets enthusiast consumers signal their interest to a mobile industry that caters overwhelmingly to the mainstream. It’s making it clear that we’re no longer satisfied with minor updates; we’re looking for true innovation and we’re ready to pay for it. And that message is getting through.
So in a sense, we can be proud of what’s been achieved already -- but we really want to hit that $32 million! We’re going to need a huge push, a surge in awareness that builds momentum to carry us over the line. No one here is giving up while the goal remains achievable, and you’ve all gone out of your way to add your voice to the chorus. So I’m writing to ask you to take to the Twitterverse and other social networks to encourage like-minded types to join you, and me, and companies large and small, in backing the Ubuntu Edge.
As they say, the future is already here, it’s just not widely distributed. We’re working to put it in the hands of 40,000 people, to start a revolution. And you’re there at the start.
Founder, Ubuntu and Canonical
Ubuntu Edge now $695, thanks to major industry backing
With 14 days to go, it’s time for our biggest announcement yet. From now until the end of the campaign, we’re fixing the price of the Ubuntu Edge at $695! No limited quantities, no more price changes. You wanted a more affordable Edge, and now you’ve got it.
How are we able to do this? Mainly thanks to all of you. The huge support the Ubuntu Edge has been receiving from all corners of the world has really sent a message to the mobile industry -- and that message has been received loud and clear.
Yesterday we announced that Bloomberg LP has snapped up the first of the $80,000 Enterprise bundles, and we expect more businesses to follow suit. To make it even more appealing, we’ve raised the number of phones included in the bundle from 100 to 115.
Even better, since the campaign started breaking records on day one, we’ve been negotiating with several major component suppliers who are keen to see the Edge reach its goal and drive the adoption of new mobile technologies. This is one of the key benefits of keeping some of the core specifications open: as a result of these negotiations, we can now produce the same state-of-the-art device for less than we originally estimated.
Edge for less
So of course we’re passing those savings on to you. There’s now a single unlimited $695 Ubuntu Edge perk, which comes with a year’s subscription to LastPass Premium and a place on the Founders page. At the end of the campaign, anyone who’s already pledged more than $695 for the phone will be offered a refund of the difference.
There will be no further price reductions, and we must reiterate that the Ubuntu Edge is exclusive to Indiegogo. It will not be available to buy anywhere outside of this campaign, even at launch.
The target is still $32 million, so we will need to ship a few more phones at $695 than we would at a higher price, but we believe we can do it. We have two weeks, and we have the best community out there, so let’s get to work: share this news, get the word out, and let’s get the Ubuntu Edge made!
The Ubuntu Edge team