I never realised the stress of a project until this camera. Sure, university was stressful, sure buying a car was stressful, and managing JooVuu is stressful but add all the stress up and you still do not reach 50% of the stress you experience with creating a camera. When starting a large project you know hiccups and problems will arise. It’s part of the course but when you are a small business like JooVuu this investment is make or break for us, so every problem, every hiccup, every bump, increases the stress load by 100%.
Let’s just run through some of the problems we have had since we announced this project back in April:
- Losing the manufacturer
- Losing our affordable MOQ
- Changing the lens
- Changing the lens base
- Changing the mould material
- Changing the mould design
- Changing the LED sequence (does not sound big but actually it was probably one of the most stressful times)
- Heating problems
- WiFi problems
- MicroSD problems
- Feature problems (not working)
- Half feature problems (where features work but not how they should be)
- App connection issues
- App design issues
- App function problems
- Saving function problems
- Implementing user feedback
- Firmware issues
Plus a lot lot lot more. Each above bullet point could be broken into about a further 6 bullet points for the little problems that caused the big problem. But I’ll stop with this – basically a lot of problems arise and at each problem when you are desperately researching, emailing, phoning and just jumping up and down in frustration, you want to give up and just say ‘well I tried.’ But then you solve the problem and you think – ‘Oh my god, this product is going to be amazing’ – and these two thoughts can happen within minutes of each other. It’ is what makes this journey so exhilarating if not debilitating due to stress. Your emotions are just a roller coaster.
So now you know developing a camera is about as emotionally stable as a a molotov cocktail, how do we keep going? Let me get this clear now. It’s not for the money. If I wanted a lot of money, I would have invested my money in some stocks or apparently built a smartwatch (everyone seems to be building these). What keeps me going is the challenge. Some people may say they are determined to succeed because they do it for the love of the customers etc but my (educated) guess is that’s a lie. A lie my be a too strong a word, but like me they do it for the challenge and part of the challenge is creating a product that the customers love. The challenge is enormous and unforgiving – you mess up, you mess up. No second tries. No ‘oh sorry let me do x y and z’. You’ve built a bad product and now you are stuck with a large quantity of them and not being able to shift them. Hundreds of parts have to come together all in perfect sync otherwise everything is screwed. The app designers have to nail the code, and the firmware coders have to nail the firmware, and the hardware engineers have to nail the hardware, the case manufacturers have to nail the dimensions of the case, the capacitor engineers have to nail the capacitors, the beta testers have to find the bugs, and me – well I have to make sure everyone is happy, on task, hitting what they need to, and everyone is providing and has the information they have. That is the challenge, that is being a puppet master.
People have said, ‘oh this cheap knockoff chinese camera is x price, I expect yours to be the same otherwise I won’t buy it’. Well fine. The cheap cameras use generic apps, poorly written firmware, badly designed hardware, poorly engineered cases, cheap internals, and generally just crap. So go and buy your crap camera for $3 and complain vigorously on the forums when it stops after 10 days.. This camera is not cheap crap – this camera like all high quality products is a boat load of work which the customer will not see even 1% of what went into it. We are only working with quality retailers because whilst the price may be higher we will ensure you only receive the best support from where you bought your JooVuu X from. So you may pay £20 ($30) more for this camera, just know that this gets you a much higher quality of service, which a far higher quality product where the components inside the camera are designed to last.