RIP, Lily Drone: $34 Million in Pre-Orders Isn't Enough to Save It
The "drone that flies itself" actually won't be flying at all.
Back in 2015, we reported on an inspired new piece of tech that would pave the way for "follow along" drone production in the years to come. The Lily was one of the first of its kind: an ultra portable drone that follows a tracking device that you wear on your wrist. All you had to do was throw the thing in the air, and voila! It would fly according to whichever flight path you chose.
The Lily featured a camera capable of 12-megapixel stills, 1080p footage at 60 frames per second, and 720p video at 120fps with a 94-degree field of view. For action enthusiasts, its additional waterproof capabilities were just the cherry on top.
The company has stated it will use its remaining assets to get your money back.
It was first thought that Lily would begin shipping in early 2016 for a street price of $1,000. With a nifty little pre-order, however, you could nab the drone for almost half the price, at $499. Perhaps it was this deal that allowed Lily Robotics to rack up $34 million in pre-orders for 60,000 machines. Unfortunately, in a blog post put up earlier today, co-founders Antoine Balaresque and Henry Bradlow explained that it just wasn't enough.
Apparently, Lily Robotics had finally gotten the product ready for release after nearly two years of R&D, a lengthy duration which led many to believe they were getting scammed. During this extensive research and development stage, the company ran out of money; eventually, there wasn't enough left to actually produce drones to fill the pre-order sales.
If you are one of the unlucky few that decided to go in on the pre-order for this drone, take solace in the fact that the company has stated it will use its remaining assets to get your money back. In fact, you won't have to do anything if you still have the card bought it with; if you don't, you'll have to fill out this form.