Crowdfunding can be fun, but also risky for backers, especially when backing projects from startups. There are many such examples of projects gone bad, and last year we noted TAIHE Gemini portable display was another crowdfunding campaign gone wrong despite raising over one million dollars.
Today, I’d like to reiterate this warning with “Mi Mini PC“, a pocket-size Windows 10 Mobile PC that was introduced on Indiegogo and raised a cool 1.5 million dollars. Note that the “Mi” here is completely unrelated to Xiaomi, and the product was developed by a company with the now-unreachable mipcworld.com website.
There were early red flags shorting after the launch of the campaign with the developer making unrealistic claims about a free upgrade from Atom x7 to Core M3-7Y30, and no pictures of an actual prototype. But somebody just left a comment on the CNX Software article that there was still nothing.
So I had a look. The last update was in December 2018…
My naive self just thought “well, good that must mean the products were shipped after all”. But there’s currently an unusually large number of comments, precisely 8,931, and it’s not to proclaim how delighted people are with the product…
Time limits for Chargebacks for goods not delivered hasn’t changed. The limit of 540 days from the transaction date hasn’t been extended. This precludes anyone from requesting a Chargeback for this Scampaign if they haven’t already done so.
It’s also always tricky to get money back when multiple countries/parties are involved, in this case, the Hong Kong company, Indiegogo in the US, and the country of backers, as the legal expenses required would be much greater than the value of the products. So many of the”17,449 backers, if not most, will have simply lost their money.