So, I’m a little concerned about the quality of LCD’s you keep receiving from the manufacturer. Are you incurring extra charges by rejecting LCD’s that don’t pass inspection? Does the manufacturer have a problem with quality assurance on their end? What is the disconnect that they keep sending bad LCD’s?
The information shared by @Konstantinos is that after the last batch failed Eve QC, the QC on the vendor side has been raised to assure that Eve only receives A-class panels. This in return does not mean that every panel passes the Eve QC, but the dropout amount should decrease significantly. Also agreements were adjusted in that regard to ensure a cost alignment between vendor and Eve.
But before further speculation starts we should wait until the Eve QC is completed (or at least performed for a good amount of received panels) and Eve can judge better what the next steps and timelines are. They are working on fallback solutions (different ones) to be covered for the scenario which occurred with batch 1 and 2.
I think the onus needs to be on the manufacturer. They should not be shipping LCD’s that do not pass the EVE standards. EVE should still QC everything they receive, but they shouldn’t be having this many part issues so close to mass production. It just seems like the LCD manufacturer is being a bit shady.
The problem is Eve is a small fish in the sea. The heavy hitters get the best screens and the lower binned ones they try to pass off on the little guy. Good for Eve for standing up to it and demanding the best!
There are a few things to keep in mind:
The making of displays is a risky business, and a lot can and will go wrong. Take for instance pixel defects. When you’re creating displays that consist of 14 971 392 individual subpixels, there’s a good chance that one of them doesn’t work as intended. In a way, it’s a small miracle every time a display rolls off the line that has all 14 971 392 working as intended! This is also the reason why many monitor companies will not consider a dead pixel a ‘defect’ covered under warranty – not unless there are more than x defective pixels per million!
The solution to this, is that the good screens go into high-quality devices where the manufacturer pays a higher price for those panels, but also charges a higher price from the end user. Top end monitors will be sold guaranteed to have no pixel defects, and that’s possible because the monitor manufacturer bought a more expensive, higher quality batch of screens from the panel manufacturer.
A B-brand may offer a much cheaper monitor but use a panel of a lower quality tier. Most end users will still get a great panel, but some will get a panel that’s not quite perfect. But at a better price. The lower quality panels may end up built into factory machinery or cheap devices for poorer markets. These markets won’t care about a perfect panel as much as they care about saving a buck.
Because the ‘bad’ screens are sold, albeit at a lower price point, there is less pressure on the ‘good’ screens to cover production and material costs, and turn a profit for the manufacturer. So in a way, selling the ‘bad’ screens to less-picky end users makes the ‘good’ screens more affordable for people like us. Processor manufacturers also do this: If one transistor doesn’t work as planned in a CPU that consists of billions of transistors, you just shut down the core it’s in, and sell your quad-core as a triple-core or dual-core. Instead of throwing away the silicon, what might once have been sold as an i5 finds a new life as an i3 in someone’s office computer.
We are not buying directly from the manufacturer. Manufacturers will only ship directly to companies that buy large, large amounts of their product. We are basically dealing with a middle-man here: Someone who buys enough at a time that the manufacturer will sell to them, and then resells them in smaller batches to companies like Eve who are too small to order directly from the manufacturer. Because of this, we rely on these middle-men, they hold a lot of the power in negotiation.
Since the panel manufacturer is not selling the screens to us, we’re not dealing with a company trying to uphold its reputation. Instead, we’re dealing with this middle-man who knows that we can get the screens from him, or not at all. That we were able to renegotiate better terms is a testament to the leverage given to us by our partner companies and the media success the V has become in the wake of Computex.
In the end though, it’s not that the panel manufacturer is not capable of creating superb displays. And it’s not like our supplier does not have superb displays in stock. The latter just needed reminding that we’re not just some small helpless start-up that they can unload their bad screens on since we are under pressure to deliver devices to our customers. It’s not a perfect world, but apparently it’s not too uncommon a thing when dealing with the big Chinese players as a small outside company. I don’t think they expected us to quality check quite so thoroughly, and in the end they too know that we are paying for the best quality displays. And that if they don’t deliver them now, we’re also not going to order many, many more for the people who are lined up to get their hands on a V.
We will not accept the B-quality. If you buy a V, you’re buying a premium device, with a premium display, so you get a premium experience.
With 14 971 392 working subpixels. And not 1 less!
I would like the name of the middleman should there be a quality issue once more.
Wouldn’t we all. As far as I know though, that information is all under NDA.
For now, there’s no point in plotting revenge against those who have wronged us or anything of the sort. Our best option, as @exialpho already said, is to wait until the new delivery of panels gets through quality control and the update from the team that will follow on the 20th at the latest.
From an earlier update, I thought Microsoft was helping out with the displays. Was that not correct?
Not directly. People in the community have suggested that since we’re partnered with Microsoft we should ask them to put pressure on the vendor, or to share with us display panels that they have bought for the Surface devices. However, our connection is with the department at Microsoft that is all about working with device manufacturers to make Windows work as well as it can – not the department at Microsoft that makes its own hardware devices.
Thank you for that clarification.
Hopefully there is no need at this point, but couldn’t the folks at Microsoft put you in touch with their internal warehouse folks for screens in Redmond to buy 5000, that is a drop in the bucket for them. I even know which building that it, I was there about four years ago.
No, they can’t. That’s the exact point of the previous post.
I think the question is how do we help you guys become a bigger player in the market? I’d love to see you sell 100K units.
One easy way to help us sell 100k units, is to go to our web shop when it opens and buy 100k units
Continue supporting us - as simple as that
While the V will not always be the best choice for everyone (if you’re a hardcore gamer then the V will not be the device for you) maybe suggest it when someone things of getting a Surface
Actually, you guys, there is something you can do to help yourselves: once you got EVE up and running and in regular production, you can get into the public procurement game; you can beat the competition in terms of price, you are an EU start-up/small medium company, you fit the EU 2020 agenda, your product has more EU added value, compared to the competition, the only thing you will need is to build a credible system of technical support.
No way, Microsoft (hardware division) has no interest whatsoever to help Eve with "hardware’ procurement, or making things easy for Eve!
After all is said and done, the Eve V is a competitor and could end up being a big, and strong competitor.
So why would they help. It doesn’t make commercial sense.
On the other hand the software department of MS is of course happy to assist, but they have nothing to do with hardware.
It’s just the way business is done.
I think the determination of the Eve team will come through in the end.
Our support rather than criticism will help them a lot to win in the end
Microsoft wins either way, they sell software licenses and first and formost, microsoft is a software company. So they would be happy to assist if it means taking licenses away from Apple.