The idea of an autonomous camera drone that would be able to follow you around anywhere and capture video of you snowboarding, driving, biking or hiking seemed like an innovative idea. The concept was a big enough of a hit to score a whopping $34M in pre-orders from consumers although as of today, we know that these units will never ship.
An abrupt announcement from the company behind Lily was sent out today which stated the following:
At the same time, we have been racing against a clock of ever-diminishing funds. Over the past few months, we have tried to secure financing in order to unlock our manufacturing line and ship our first units – but have been unable to do this. As a result, we are deeply saddened to say that we are planning to wind down the company and offer refunds to customers.
While this is unfortunate news for consumers who were hoping to get their hands on their pre-ordered Lily drone sometime soon, it just reflects how saturated the drone market has become and how expensive it is to earn and maintain a market share in the space.
As anyone who follows the drone space knows,GoPro has already tried and failed to launch their drone system. While GoPro made due to all their early adopters who had to return their Karma drones by gifting them a free Hero 5 Black, Lily is doing the right thing and automatically refunding all pre-orders within the next 60-days.