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Products => Crowd Funded Projects => Topic started by: brucehoult on February 07, 2017, 02:48:54 pm

Title: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on February 07, 2017, 02:48:54 pm
OK, it\s not crowd-funded, but after fifteen months it must surely go down as vapourware.

I've never seen a place where it wasn't at least one of:

1) out of stock

2) $30+, instead of the advertised $5

3) limit of one per customer (plus beaucoup shipping) if it was $5
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Kean on February 07, 2017, 08:47:03 pm
Nope, definitely not vapourware - I have some*.  Just very poor supply for the demand.  :-//

There have been a few places that did actually sell them for US$5 - in fact you can buy (one) right now at Adafruit
https://www.adafruit.com/product/2885 (https://www.adafruit.com/product/2885)

Clearly it works as a loss leader, and shipping will add significantly to cost when you can't bulk buy or combine with other purchase to spread shipping cost across multiple units.  Not sure if you can add one to each order with Adafruit, or they limit you to one per account.

* Admittedly to buy mine I had to stump up AU$30 each as they were bundled with (somewhat useful) accessories.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: CJay on February 07, 2017, 09:24:00 pm
Got two of em here, one free from a magazine and the other for £4 plus P&P. Definitely not vapourware but they are often limited to one per customer.

Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: elecman14 on February 07, 2017, 10:25:24 pm
This site is super handy when looking for stock http://whereismypizero.com/ (http://whereismypizero.com/). I have one sitting on my desk waiting for me to have time for the project I have in mind for it. So at least one exists  :-//. Got it from adafruit. They will email you when they get a product back in stock.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on February 07, 2017, 10:34:47 pm
If they were a proper $5 product, not a vapour $5 product them I would instantly buy 10 of them.

I just went to the stores listed as the distributors on https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/pi-zero/ (https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/pi-zero/)

thepihut will only sell one and don't ship to Russia anyway.
microcenter won't allow you to create an account with a non-US address
canakit will only sell one and want $49.95 shipping.
adafruit will only sell one, and don't ship to Russia (and minimum $14.90 to NZ, where I aren't right now)
pimoroni will only sell one and don't ship to Russia anyway.

Russian site electromicro.ru appears to let me order as many as I want (who knows if that's real...) -- but at 2000 rubles ($33.60) each! Might as well get a Pi3 for a bit more, or various others for less e.g. $23 for Orange Pi One or NanoPi NEO 512 MB, $20 for NanoPi NEO 256 MB (40mm x 40mm! Quad core A7 @ 1.2 GHz!)
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: mmagin on February 07, 2017, 11:22:35 pm
Months after introduction and still the two places that have stock are still limit one per customer?  Compared to the original Pi, this seems like a flop.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: james_s on February 08, 2017, 12:07:09 am
A flop or a huge success? Can't really say without seeing the numbers. I'd be more inclined to believe it was a flop if everyone had them in stock and they weren't moving. I recall the original Pi being difficult to get for quite a while after it came out.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on February 08, 2017, 12:14:14 am
As a complete contrast:

https://www.crowdsupply.com/sifive/hifive1/ (https://www.crowdsupply.com/sifive/hifive1/)

They put the campaign up in the last days of November, promising to ship the first "Founder's Edition" batch of 250 on December 20. I ordered one on December 4th, and it was first scanned by USPS on December 23. Close enough.

The campaign only had a $1 goal, so really they're only using Crowd Supply for logistics on a product they'd already funded development of. Fine by me.

You don't really need a 320 MHz CPU in an arduino with only 16 KB of RAM, but I guess they just couldn't make it any slower even though it's fabbed in 180 nm. Can't wait for SiFive's full on 28 nm 64 bit chips with MMU and multi cores running Linux in about a year. They're expecting 1.6 GHz. That should give the A53 ARM boards a good fright.

I've run a test of a simple program on the HiFive1 and various other things:

Code: [Select]
// Program to count primes. Not great code, but I wanted something that
// could run in 16 KB and took time, and not optimizable (and with
// unpredictable branches). Size is for just countPrimes() with gcc -O1
//
// SZ = 1000 -> 3713160 primes, all primes up to 7919^2 = 62710561
//   2.872 sec i7 6700K @ 4200 MHz           240 bytes  12.1 billion clocks
//   4.868 sec i7 3770  @ 3900 MHz           240 bytes  19.0 billion clocks
//   9.740 sec i7 6700K qemu-riscv           182 bytes  40.9 billion clocks
//  11.445 sec Odroid XU4 A15 @ 2 GHz        204 bytes  22.9 billion clocks
//  19.500 sec Odroid C2 A53 @ 1.536 GHz A64 276 bytes  30.0 billion clocks
//  23.940 sec Odroid C2 A53 @ 1.536 GHz T32 204 bytes  36.8 billion clocks
//  24.636 sec i7 6700K qemu-arm             204 bytes 103.5 billion clocks
//  25.060 sec i7 6700K qemu-aarch64         276 bytes 105.3 billion clocks
//  30.420 sec Pi3 Cortex A53 @ 1.2 GHz      204 bytes  36.5 billion clocks
//  47.910 sec Pi2 Cortex A7 @ 900 MHz       204 bytes  42.1 billion clocks
// 112.163 sec HiFive1 RISCV @ 320 MHz       182 bytes  35.9 billion clocks
// 140.241 sec HiFive1 RISCV @ 256 MHz       182 bytes  35.9 billion clocks

#include <stdio.h>

#define SZ 1000
int primes[SZ], sieve[SZ];
int nSieve = 0;

int countPrimes(){
  primes[0] = 2; sieve[0] = 4; ++nSieve;
  int nPrimes = 1, trial = 3, sqr=2;
  while (1){
    while (sqr*sqr <= trial) ++sqr;
    --sqr;
    for (int i=0; i<nSieve; ++i){
      if (primes[i] > sqr) goto found_prime;
      while (sieve[i] < trial) sieve[i] += primes[i];
      if (sieve[i] == trial) goto try_next;
    }
    break;
  found_prime:
    if (nSieve < SZ){
      //printf("Saving %d: %d\n", nSieve+1, trial);
      primes[nSieve] = trial;
      sieve[nSieve] = trial*trial;
      ++nSieve;
    }
    ++nPrimes;
  try_next:
    ++trial;
  }
  return nPrimes;
}

int main(){
  int res = countPrimes();
  printf("%d primes found\n", res);
  return 0;
}
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on February 08, 2017, 12:18:50 am
A flop or a huge success? Can't really say without seeing the numbers. I'd be more inclined to believe it was a flop if everyone had them in stock and they weren't moving. I recall the original Pi being difficult to get for quite a while after it came out.

It's 15 months already. Announced in November 2015. I think it would be a huge *sales* success if they made enough of them. If they can't get manufacturing sorted out after fifteen months then it's because they don't want to. Probably losing money on every one sold.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: julianhigginson on February 08, 2017, 10:05:56 am
yeah it definitely looks like the pi zero isn't being pushed commercially, and I also suspect the reason is it costs more to make than it sells for.

...but it was an awesome bit of publicity for a while there!
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: CJay on February 08, 2017, 11:08:23 am
I guess it'd be worth asking over on the foundation website, they've been reasonably open about problems in the past.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: hwj-d on February 08, 2017, 11:33:42 am
Quote
... and don't ship to Russia anyway.
Maybe that have to do with this STUPID embargo to Russian Federation?
Really don't know why they do that   :-//
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on February 08, 2017, 12:44:15 pm
Quote
... and don't ship to Russia anyway.
Maybe that have to do with this STUPID embargo to Russian Federation?
Really don't know why they do that   :-//

I don't want to get too much into politics :-)

I think it's important to distinguish between the Russian people and the Russian government. The Russian government for sure is doing some things that should be unacceptable in the modern world, and should be punished for it. I'm all for the various Magnitsky acts in different countries, and other measures. However, the bulk of the Russian people are innocent and furthermore just want to live a peaceful life in a normal country with normal relations with the rest of the world. Sanctions preventing sales of certain things to Russia hurt the people, not the government. In fact if anything the shared hardship benefits the government. To its credit, NZ has never joined these sanctions, though Aussie has.

I'm a Kiwi working in the Moscow R&D centre of a major electronics company. There are 300 Russians and me, the only non-Russian speaker. I'm just a grunt programmer (albeit a senior one), not any kind of manager or boss. My colleagues are great. They all speak English, all documents and meetings are in English (and were long before I came here). They are not noticeably different from colleagues I've had in tech companies NZ or California -- except for some reason they are unfamiliar with Dilbert. Many of them can recite Monty Python skits, HHGttG etc. But not Dilbert. Weird. They would get on just fine in western companies and society -- and in fact one of the biggest problems is that grads with  2- 3 years experience disappear to jobs in Cambridge (UK) or California at a frightening rate. Well, good on 'em.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: hwj-d on February 08, 2017, 04:27:10 pm
Quote
... and don't ship to Russia anyway.
Maybe that have to do with this STUPID embargo to Russian Federation?
Really don't know why they do that   :-//

I don't want to get too much into politics :-)
Agree, this really can kill every ontopic.
But interesting to hear what you say.  :-+
Additional onething only i want to tell.
[OT]
Most working and leading people don't understand this big game of international politics and especially this kind of macroökonomics they should do in her own interest. Military repression and ökonomical austerity never doesn't work, at all. That should learn the whole western hemisphere. That's the big problem specialy here in Europe too.
[/OT]
Ok, thats me :phew: smiling again, and back to  :-DMM
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: f4eru on February 08, 2017, 09:09:24 pm
Yep. The Zero is a badly done publicity stunt. They produce it at a loss, the retailers make zero marge on it. (most retailers didn't even want to list it)

Why didn't they limit their publicity stunt to a few thousands, and then put a realistic price on it ??? |O |O |O
Really, it could be usefull, and nobody would make a loss at double the price........

Perhaps a good and sane alternative is the C.H.I.P. ?

I would classify the raspberry zero as a quasi vaporware.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Rasz on March 01, 2017, 01:18:17 pm
Why didn't they limit their publicity stunt to a few thousands


they did, they were making something like 2K a week :D
Zero is meant to get people in the door, look at the "out of stock" sign and purchase "founders edition PEE bundle" at low low price of $99, or 'essentials cable/case bundle' at $39.99
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Ian.M on March 01, 2017, 01:52:25 pm
Hopefully the new PI Zero W's $10 pricepoint isn't a loss-leader. If they are getting the Cypress CYW43438 wireless chip cheap enough they may have improved their margin.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on March 01, 2017, 02:02:00 pm
Hopefully the new PI Zero W's $10 pricepoint isn't a loss-leader. If they are getting the Cypress CYW43438 wireless chip cheap enough they may have improved their margin.

My thoughts exactly. Maybe they now have positive margin on them.

According to the intro video they'd already make 80000 as at Feb 20, and are producing the W at the rate of 25000 a week. That's much better than the 2000 quoted above for the original Zero.

I'd have happily paid $7 or $8 or even $10 for the original Zero if it meant I could actually order 10 or 20 of them in one go and get them sent to the country I live in at the moment.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: NANDBlog on March 01, 2017, 02:06:28 pm
Hopefully the new PI Zero W's $10 pricepoint isn't a loss-leader. If they are getting the Cypress CYW43438 wireless chip cheap enough they may have improved their margin.

My thoughts exactly. Maybe they now have positive margin on them.

According to the intro video they'd already make 80000 as at Feb 20, and are producing the W at the rate of 25000 a week. That's much better than the 2000 quoted above for the original Zero.

I'd have happily paid $7 or $8 or even $10 for the original Zero if it meant I could actually order 10 or 20 of them in one go and get them sent to the country I live in at the moment.
So far you can only order the Pi Zero W one by one. So they need to crank up the numbers.
What I did was: Order a zero + a zero w yesterday. Today it is out of stock.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Holmes34 on March 04, 2017, 04:57:00 pm
How can something be vaporware when it literally shipped thousands and thousands in its first month? It's only vaporware if it never materialises.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: NANDBlog on March 04, 2017, 05:20:26 pm
How can something be vaporware when it literally shipped thousands and thousands in its first month? It's only vaporware if it never materialises.
Only 1 per customer, that's how.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: 3db on March 04, 2017, 05:44:54 pm
Perhaps you should remember that the Raspberry PI foundation is a charity.
It's prime directive is education.
I've seen distributors selling this board as a complete kit and you can buy it in multiples for the education market.
To call it vapourware is bullshit.

3DB
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on March 04, 2017, 10:44:54 pm
Perhaps you should remember that the Raspberry PI foundation is a charity.
It's prime directive is education.
I've seen distributors selling this board as a complete kit and you can buy it in multiples for the education market.
To call it vapourware is bullshit.

To call it a $5 PC and then not let you buy 10 or 100 of them for $5 each is bullshit.

I can go to element14.com and order literally 1000+ Pi 2s or Pi 3s for same day shipping at $35 each. In fact they give discounts for 10+.

That's a non-vapour product.

There must be some price between $5 and $35 at which it's worthwhile manufacturing enough Pi Zeros to meet demand. Maybe it's $10. Maybe it's $15. I don't know. Bu they should figure it out and make lots of them and stop this wanking about it being a $5 computer. It's not.

Maybe that price is $10, and they can even throw in an extra WIFI/BT chip. Let's hope so.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: 3db on March 05, 2017, 04:24:24 am
@brucehoult

GO talk to Element14 then.
If they want to make that available they can !!
I'll leave you to research why this is the case.
It's valid to call the $5 price bullshit.
The vapourware comment is my opinion bollocks.
The product exists so it CAN'T be vapourware.

3DB
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Bud on March 05, 2017, 04:59:51 am
Well if Raspberry PI foundation is a charity, they have no commercial interest in sustainable manufacturing of the product. They wake up one morning and decide they better open a bakery. So the product will vaporize. How's this is not vapourware.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: MK14 on March 05, 2017, 06:21:20 am
Could it be that the sales volumes are too low, which is why there are so few of them available for sale ?

I.e. They may need to make a huge quantity of them, to get very good volume price discounts, so that they can buy the components at nice high volume, reduced prices and get the bulk manufacturing costs down, to such a low price point, of $5.

E.g. They need orders of 250K, 500K or even a million of them, to economically viably make them, and have not been able to get such large (guaranteed) orders yet.

I.e. It is a bit like an Integrated Circuit manufacturer (such as Maxim) to stop making a new Integrated Circuit, because of a lack of sales success in the market place. I.e. The sales volumes are way too low, to economically continue trying to sell and make the new chip, so they abandon it.

It is also possible the selling agents profit margin on a $5 item like that, is too low (or even non-existent), to make it worth their while, selling them in bulk.

As other(s) have said in this thread. It is strange that they don't sell them at a higher price (e.g. $10). But at least have them in stock and available for customers to buy as many as they want (i.e. NOT limited to 1 per customer).
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Kean on March 05, 2017, 07:43:39 am
How's this is not vapourware.

Very simple - it just doesn't come close to meeting the definition of vapourware  :palm:

Quote
vapourware is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vaporware

Quote
Software or hardware that has been advertised but is not yet available to buy, either because it is only a concept or because it is still being written or designed.
https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/vapourware
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: 3db on March 05, 2017, 10:12:00 am
Well if Raspberry PI foundation is a charity, they have no commercial interest in sustainable manufacturing of the product. They wake up one morning and decide they better open a bakery. So the product will vaporize. How's this is not vapourware.

Do you doubt that they are a registered charity ?.
If Microsoft woke up tomorrow and decided to open a bakery. Would they be vapourware.
SO your point is ?
3DB

 
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on March 05, 2017, 03:15:50 pm
It is also possible the selling agents profit margin on a $5 item like that, is too low (or even non-existent), to make it worth their while, selling them in bulk.

The solution to that is very simple: sell them in 10-packs.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: MK14 on March 06, 2017, 02:01:15 am
It is also possible the selling agents profit margin on a $5 item like that, is too low (or even non-existent), to make it worth their while, selling them in bulk.

The solution to that is very simple: sell them in 10-packs.

That would work if the item (PI Zero's) are available at a profitable bulk price to the distributors. But I think the problem here, is that they are NOT available at a suitably low bulk price, to make that a viable option, at the moment.

The distributors are probably making their profits on high one-off delivery charges and/or by selling other stuff with the PI Zero. So bulk 10 packs would not be profitable, if that is how the distributors are making their profits.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: NANDBlog on March 06, 2017, 09:54:56 am
How's this is not vapourware.

Very simple - it just doesn't come close to meeting the definition of vapourware  :palm:
OK, then give me a better name for hardware, that is not available in high enough quantities!
There is no name for that. It took me more than a year to get my hands on one for 5 EUR, not dollar BTW.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Kean on March 06, 2017, 10:43:27 am
OK, then give me a better name for hardware, that is not available in high enough quantities!
There is no name for that. It took me more than a year to get my hands on one for 5 EUR, not dollar BTW.

Successful?   :-DD

It is simple economics.  I don't think any company can sustainably produce it at that cost - so it has to be subsidised somehow.  As I understand it, the Foundation pays for production runs of the Pi Zero, unlike all the other models which are manufactured and sold by the distributors (RS, element14/embest).  The Foundation does want to make them available to the masses, but as soon as they were available they would all be snapped up by people or businesses with (often commercial/profit driven) ideas based around them.  That defeats the goals of the Foundation, especially if it eats into the profit from the other models which helps fund the foundation.

I actualy had to pay about AU$30 (~US22) each for my original ones (they came with some cheap accessories).  And to be honest I was just pleased to be able to get them.  Yes, if they were available to me in quantity at US$5 (or US$10, maybe even more) I'd be buying them by the box load.  I've designed my own low cost ARM Linux board (imx233, 64MB RAM, microSD boot), and so I have a fair idea of what goes into designing, manufacturing, distributing, and supporting these things.

Somewhat related, but the $9 C.H.I.P computer is also unavailable to purchase at present due to high demand, and now people are whining about that - god help us... https://getchip.com/
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Ian.M on March 06, 2017, 01:42:17 pm
Its a great pity the foundation doesn't produce the Zero and Zero W at a realistic price to make a moderate profit + subsidise it to bona-fide educational institutions, registered students, and offer a one only per household (match shipping address OR credit card) special offer to attract new users.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Kean on March 06, 2017, 02:57:06 pm
I reckon they'd love to... but the logistics...
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: Ian.M on March 06, 2017, 06:45:35 pm
They'd probably have to use a single distributor for the end user one per household special offer.  Everything else could be handled by a typical large distributor's ordering system - they are usually already set up for one-off coupon codes which could be requested by educational institutions to be sent to registered students, and for discount codes that are tied to a secfic class of customer.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: rosak on May 20, 2017, 02:06:29 am
Quote
... and don't ship to Russia anyway.
Maybe that have to do with this STUPID embargo to Russian Federation?
Really don't know why they do that   :-//

Not sure if that's the same case but I don't ship to Russia anymore too. I sell some stuff on eBay. I think I shipped my items to every single country in the world, some of them I didn't even know they exist. No problems at all. But on 10 items sent to Russia 5 didn't arrive. I had to resend on my own expense but buyers blamed me anyway. There was too much fuss about it so I excluded Russia from my shipping destination. And I'm not talking about bulky expensive parcels, just small light envelopes.
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: brucehoult on May 20, 2017, 07:11:24 am
Quote
... and don't ship to Russia anyway.
Maybe that have to do with this STUPID embargo to Russian Federation?
Really don't know why they do that   :-//

Not sure if that's the same case but I don't ship to Russia anymore too. I sell some stuff on eBay. I think I shipped my items to every single country in the world, some of them I didn't even know they exist. No problems at all. But on 10 items sent to Russia 5 didn't arrive. I had to resend on my own expense but buyers blamed me anyway. There was too much fuss about it so I excluded Russia from my shipping destination. And I'm not talking about bulky expensive parcels, just small light envelopes.

My experience after two years living in Moscow: anything with tracking with a company such as DHL arrives, every time. Regular letters and things like magazines arrive. Interesting looking packages without tracking have a high chance of not arriving :-(
Title: Re: Raspberry Pi Zero
Post by: BroMarduk on June 03, 2017, 02:35:54 pm
Somewhat related, but the $9 C.H.I.P computer is also unavailable to purchase at present due to high demand, and now people are whining about that - god help us... https://getchip.com/

Looks like Next Thing Co. is coming out with an "upgraded" C.H.I.P..   Might have be the reason for the short supply as well.   

https://getchip.com/