Author Topic: Silicon Valley invests $120 Mill. in $400 juicer that works as well as hands  (Read 38519 times)

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Offline Kilrah

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Sure, understand the interest of looking at all aspects.

I actually just read that Juicero has put forward the ability to block packs from being used if there was a recall on a batch of product.
That forces the remote authentication scenario.
 

Offline timb

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Actually, it's a bit weird they're using the CC3200 *and* and STM32 on the same board. They should shave a couple of bucks off by using the CC3100 instead.
You answered yourself in the first part of your post. Given how overboard they went with everything they couldn't care less about shaving a buck or 2 on the STM.

It still doesn't make sense. Lowering the BOM cost means more money in their pocket. It's not like designing in the CC3100 would be any harder than the CC3200. The power and RF design is *identical* in pretty much every way between the two parts, the CC3200 simply has additional I/O for the MCU functions.

In fact, it would have been *easier* to design in the CC3100, since you could just talk to the STM32 via SPI right out of the box. The CC3200 would need to be programmed with some custom firmware to allow it to send data back and forth between the STM32.
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic; e.g., Cheez Whiz, Hot Dogs and RF.
 

Offline AndyC_772

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I actually just read that Juicero has put forward the ability to block packs from being used if there was a recall on a batch of product.
That forces the remote authentication scenario.

...or if the pack has passed its expiry date, or if it's already been pressed, or even partially pressed but then aborted.

Seems that refusing to press packs is a part of the business model too. There's no "oh, ffs, just press the damn thing" button.

Offline amyk

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Remove the DRM and subscriptions and they will be out of business in a month. Not that I'd complain though...

Sure, I've no problem with that either. In fact I'd be surprised if someone doesn't start a little business of their own, selling very simple control PCBs which completely replace the electronics in the Juicero, along with a few refillable bags.
There's this, which is basically the Juicero without the IoT DRM: http://www.juisir.com/

(It does use semi-special bags, but I bet those would be easy to make yourself.)

Not surprisingly, Juicero is going after them: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/04/juice-wars-juicero-has-sued-another-juicer-maker-for-patent-infringement/

Funny comparison table from Juisir. No mention of Internet connectivity requirement.
 

Offline ConKbot

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Ignoring the whole juice DRM, and the fact that hardware relying on external servers is garbage, they buy a high voltage DC motor from a drill motor company and instead of getting them to throw a planetary gearbox that's 1/2 the size of the motor? or using a worm drive for a steep reduction, they put together a fancy custom machined gearbox?   Custom power supply for 330v   that's inaccessible to the user instead of rectified (and doubled in 120v land) mains?  Jeeze these guys sure knew how to stuff, but sure didn't know when or why to do stuff.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 11:35:09 am by ConKbot »
 

Offline Kilrah

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In fact, it would have been *easier* to design in the CC3100, since you could just talk to the STM32 via SPI right out of the box. The CC3200 would need to be programmed with some custom firmware to allow it to send data back and forth between the STM32.
Given their locking down of things I'd say that's intentional, that way they can use a non-standard communication scheme to make reverse-engineering more difficult.

Anyway the whole thing is so overvblown it really sounds like it's based on a marketing whiz crunching up some numbers and predicting they'd basically be drowning under so many millions of monthly profits from their bag sales in no time, backed by people who believed it and invested way more than you'd expect into such a thing, driving everybody into "we don't need to care a single bit about costs becasue we'll make soooo much anyway" mode.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 11:35:22 am by Kilrah »
 

Offline EEVblog

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I actually just read that Juicero has put forward the ability to block packs from being used if there was a recall on a batch of product.
That forces the remote authentication scenario.

Just cut it and squeeze by hand  :-DD
 
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Offline Kilrah

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The typical customer won't even think/remember they can do that  :-DD
 

Online xrunner

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Quote
Juicero says you can mail your $700 juicers back for a refund if you were outraged to learn you can squeeze its juice packs by hand

Juicero, the maker of a high-tech juicing machine, is offering full refunds to customers who are upset to learn that its juice packs can be squeezed by hand.

In a lengthy blog post on Medium on Thursday to address the hand-squeezing controversy, Juicero CEO Jeff Dunn promised to take back machines from any customer who "feels that we aren’t making it easier, more enjoyable and delicious to form a healthy habit."

"If you send us your Press, we’ll refund the money you paid for it. Period," he wrote.

When it was launched a year ago, the $700 Juicero machine touted its ability to create the perfect glass of juice, harnessing the tons of force generated by the machine to squeeze out every last drop of juice from the bags of fresh fruits and vegetables.

But on Wednesday, Bloomberg broke the news that the high-end juicer backed by Silicon Valley's elite venture capitalists wasn't even needed to squeeze out the juice. It turned out that hand-squeezing the packets yielded nearly the same amount of juice and in a slightly shorter time, according to Bloomberg's tests.

http://www.businessinsider.com/juicero-offers-refund-for-squeezing-juice-packets-2017-4
But ...

Quote
Expiration date

Now, Juicero is on the defensive and is arguing that its juicer (whose price was already cut to $400) is needed because "the value of Juicero is more than a glass of cold-pressed juice. Much more," says its CEO Jeff Dunn.

To Juicero, the value of the company is its connected juice press that can tell you when the juice is about to expire and saves you the two minutes of packet squeezing.

Like the juice packets, Juicero's refund offer also has an expiration date: Customers need to return the machines in the next 30 days. And don't expect Juicero to take care of the shipping. Dunn's blog post noted that "if you send us your Press" the company will issue a refund.

Whether a $400 juicer is worth saving two minutes of hand-squeezing is a question you'll have to decide, but here's what it was like to use the Juicero machine when Business Insider first visited last April.


I got a better idea, seeing as how you can just squeeze it by hand, just do an Addam's family design. Have two hands come out of a machine and do the squeezing!  :-DD

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Offline timb

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Quote
Juicero says you can mail your $700 juicers back for a refund if you were outraged to learn you can squeeze its juice packs by hand

Juicero, the maker of a high-tech juicing machine, is offering full refunds to customers who are upset to learn that its juice packs can be squeezed by hand.

In a lengthy blog post on Medium on Thursday to address the hand-squeezing controversy, Juicero CEO Jeff Dunn promised to take back machines from any customer who "feels that we aren’t making it easier, more enjoyable and delicious to form a healthy habit."

"If you send us your Press, we’ll refund the money you paid for it. Period," he wrote.

When it was launched a year ago, the $700 Juicero machine touted its ability to create the perfect glass of juice, harnessing the tons of force generated by the machine to squeeze out every last drop of juice from the bags of fresh fruits and vegetables.

But on Wednesday, Bloomberg broke the news that the high-end juicer backed by Silicon Valley's elite venture capitalists wasn't even needed to squeeze out the juice. It turned out that hand-squeezing the packets yielded nearly the same amount of juice and in a slightly shorter time, according to Bloomberg's tests.

http://www.businessinsider.com/juicero-offers-refund-for-squeezing-juice-packets-2017-4
But ...

Quote
Expiration date

Now, Juicero is on the defensive and is arguing that its juicer (whose price was already cut to $400) is needed because "the value of Juicero is more than a glass of cold-pressed juice. Much more," says its CEO Jeff Dunn.

To Juicero, the value of the company is its connected juice press that can tell you when the juice is about to expire and saves you the two minutes of packet squeezing.

Like the juice packets, Juicero's refund offer also has an expiration date: Customers need to return the machines in the next 30 days. And don't expect Juicero to take care of the shipping. Dunn's blog post noted that "if you send us your Press" the company will issue a refund.

Whether a $400 juicer is worth saving two minutes of hand-squeezing is a question you'll have to decide, but here's what it was like to use the Juicero machine when Business Insider first visited last April.


I got a better idea, seeing as how you can just squeeze it by hand, just do an Addam's family design. Have two hands come out of a machine and do the squeezing!  :-DD



Yeah, my mind must constantly be in he gutter because I can think of a much more profitable job for a mechanical hand and it ain't squeezing juice!
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic; e.g., Cheez Whiz, Hot Dogs and RF.
 

Offline Marco

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I don't think anyone has suggested that the machine is actually bad at juicing

Given the amount of juice you can get out by hand I think the pulp is mostly for show. I think it either only has enough power to squeeze the already liquid juice from the bag, or they found that putting large chunks of fruit&veg in the bags ran the risk of bags failing.
 

Offline MarkS

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Given the amount of juice you can get out by hand I think the pulp is mostly for show. I think it either only has enough power to squeeze the already liquid juice from the bag, or they found that putting large chunks of fruit&veg in the bags ran the risk of bags failing.

I was thinking the same thing. Anyone that has ever tried to extract juice from a fruit or vegetable knows it requires far more pieces of fruits/vegetables than what you end up getting as juice. If those pouches hold 8 oz of fruit/veggies, then there should only be about 1 - 2 oz of juice, if that. They MUST already be full of juice.
 

Offline MadTux

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One of the most overengineered piece of bad engineering.

The door is completely unnecessary, ever seen a press with a hingeable load structure? Probably not, because it weakens the structure and is completely unnecessary. Just flip the good old portal press by 90° and load the bags from the top.

That acme screw thingy is ridiculous, such a 18th century design, except they knew on how to build acme screw presses back then and used massive screws. That screw will always get all the loading on a few mm's of it's length. That's where the screw will start fretting and galling before getting stuck forever. From what I can see, they were even stupid enough to fabricate the nut from the same material as the screw (hardened? steel) instead of bronze or brass, which will make the issue even worse.
 

Offline Sredni

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Sure, understand the interest of looking at all aspects.

I actually just read that Juicero has put forward the ability to block packs from being used if there was a recall on a batch of product.
That forces the remote authentication scenario.

Yeah, right.
And the government wants to take away your privacy to fight terrorism.
Same scenario.

"It can't be that bad if it can save your life."
All instruments lie. Usually on the bench.
 

Offline Marco

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Not surprisingly, Juicero is going after them: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/04/juice-wars-juicero-has-sued-another-juicer-maker-for-patent-infringement/

The phrasing for the trade dress complaint reminds me of Apple's rectangle with rounded corners design patent ... “symmetrical, upright”.

Don't quite see how they can demand all the components to be delivered to them for destruction, trade dress is not international law.
 

Online xrunner

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There's this, which is basically the Juicero without the IoT DRM: http://www.juisir.com/

(It does use semi-special bags, but I bet those would be easy to make yourself.)

At least you can cut up your own veggies and make up the bags yourself. I bet that really pisses off Juicero -

Quote
Juisir launched a Kickstarter earlier this year, with pre-orders still underway. The company claims that its product will provide 8 tons of force to press juice from fruits and vegetables that a Juisir owner chops themselves and places in either a single-use or a re-usable bag that the plant matter gets pressed in.

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/04/juice-wars-juicero-has-sued-another-juicer-maker-for-patent-infringement/

Man these juice names are confusing me - Juicero - Juisir - I keep looking at the source page to spell them correctly.  :rant:
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Offline rrinker

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 Could go with Juiceroo but then Batteroo would have to sue.

 
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Offline RGB255_0_0

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Guess who's got his dirty mitts on one?

Your toaster just set fire to an African child over TCP.
 
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Offline MadTux

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Don't usually watch much youtube, but that stuff is hilarious  ;D ;D
 

Online xrunner

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Guess who's got his dirty mitts on one?



Hahaha - oh man gotta watch that tonight!
I am a Test Equipment Addict (TEA) - by virtue of this forum signature, I have now faced my addiction
 

Offline ivan747

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This bit made me laugh especially:

"Mr Dunn said that because each pouch of fruit and vegetables was individually tagged, the firm could remotely disable them"

 :-DD


Oh god... why...
 

Offline ivan747

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Work with me here - wouldn't it be possible to just go to the local grocery store and buy the fruit directly, take it home, and then squeeze it yourself?  ::)

The reason such things have some success is precisely because they change the boring usual way of doing it.

I feel like people are just getting bored in this day and age, and more and more new things nowadays are thus just about finding a different way to do stuff simply to try and keep people entertained, regardless of how useless or inefficient it is. And it will be since most of daily life's actions have reached "maturity" and their most efficient implementation decades ago, and any change thus has to become worse... but that's good, becasue in 10 years we'll be able to introduce a change again by bringing back the good old way that people will have forgotten in the meantime.

I see such a cycle in many fields. The lack of real progress calls for going backwards because regular change is needed. The linear progress doesn't work anymore so it's turned into a slow oscillation around the plateau.

I think you're onto something. Explains the whole mechanical watch thing, although that world has its own overpiced junk, there are some products that are true craftsmanship and mechanical engineering.
 

Offline Macbeth

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This is even better than the John Deere tractor manufacturer in trying to rinse IP rights for the corporate overlords  :palm:
 

Offline Kilrah

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And yet another awesome teardown by AvE, that was hilarious  :-DD
 

Offline cdev

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"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away."
 


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