In 2016, I backed a high-tech coffee maker called the Spinn.

At the time, I was enticed by the combined grind & brew capability of the Wi-Fi connected coffee maker, but the real reason I bought the Spinn was its patented centrifugal brewing technology. The tech, which I talked to the inventor about on a podcast back in 2016, uses a high-speed centrifuge to extract crema-like coffee brews down to the individual cup level.

It all sounded pretty good to me, so I coughed up $300 and waited for my new coffee maker. However, now with the product’s original mid-2017 and revised first quarter 2018 ship dates in the history books, I’m left wondering: will I ever get my Spinn?

I’m not the only one. A casual perusal of the company’s forums or Facebook page shows that many of early backers of the Spinn are getting restless. Throw in the multiple emails I get per week asking me if I’d heard anything (from the volume of email I get about the Spinn, I gather I may be the only journalist monitoring the progress of the product) and it seems like the company has a bit of a trust problem on its hands.

Now, it’s not like the company hasn’t been communicating. They’ve actually done a pretty good job of sending out periodic updates via its forum. The problem for the company is that once they missed their original ship date of mid-2017, they started telling all the first batch purchasers of the Spinn they’d see their coffee makers by the end of the first quarter in 2018. But by the time March rolled around, the company had moved the goal posts once again and said they were only sending machines out to “beta testers”.

Now as with any crowdfunding campaign, I knew I was taking a risk when I bought the Spinn back in 2016. But I’d backed lots of hardware projects over the past few years, and Spinn seemed to check all the boxes. Not only did they have patented technology that was differentiated, but they’d also licensed their technology to Nespresso to use in the newest line of that company’s pod-based brewing machines.

But almost two years later, I’m starting to worry I may have guessed wrong. Not only has the company missed two ship dates and is being vague about when the product will actually ship, but when I asked to talk to a “beta tester”, the company told me they cannot connect me to beta testers as they are “still going through iterations and bugs.”  Add in other potential warning signs like the departure of the Spinn technology inventor last year and one can see why I and other early backers are starting to worry.

To its credit, the company has offered myself and others a refund, but for now I’m going to continue to hang in there because I still really want a Spinn. However, like other early backers, I’ll be more skeptical about any deadlines the company gives since the company missed a long-promised ship date. At this point, I’m just hoping to see my Spinn sometime before Christmas so I can brew the coffee roasted with the Kelvin home coffee roaster, yet another high-tech coffee gadget I backed through crowdfunding.

10 COMMENTS

  1. I needed this article. Considering that they’re only giving to beta testers, you still haven’t received yours, and they’ve removed the expected batch shipment dates at the top of their website, I’m not gonna wait another year.

    PS some of your links are only available to early Spinn backers not pre-order people like me.

  2. I’ve been waiting as well. I’m close to buying a Jura & backing out. I was hoping beta testers (if they exist) would start posting reviews.

    • My sense is the beta testers are not backers. They are likely employees/family/friends. I haven’t seen anyone in the Spinn forum indicate they’ve gotten a unit.

    • I ordered the Spinn to replace a Jura ENA 4 that, in the six years I owned it, went kaput three times, the first under warranty, the second out of warranty with a cost of about $250 to repair, and the third, which sent the machine into the garage because I didn’t want to drop another bunch of cash on fixing it again only to have it break. I decided Jura machines didn’t last long enough to be worth the cost.

      Spinn looked to be the perfect solution, and with an original ship date approximately six months after I ordered it, I figured I could make pour-over coffee until then. This summer, Spinn will be missing its first promised ship date by a year. I still want the machine, but I’m not sure I will be willing to wait much longer.

  3. They are also still spending thousands on digital ads on FB and Instagram. So to add to the “ugh oh” train, they are likely out of money for actually producing the product and why things are so delayed.

  4. Went through similar b.s. with the Arist machine from Kickstarter. Difference is, kickstarter does not give a crap what happens once a project is funded. There is no way to get refunded. They began late 2014 with the promise of a machine by mid 2015. Their updates were always very vague and they rarely showed anything that represented progress. The thought was – they were super secretive to prevent their tech from being stolen.. Another thought was the whole thing was a scam the entire time. The other thought was that they were just a bunch of people punching above their weight — incompetent.

    I have been attempting to follow the progress of Spinn just because I hope it isnt Arist 2.0. There is very little a non-backer can see about their progress. Again — is this a scam or just incompetence? Not sure doesn’t seem likely the machine will ship any time soon.

    • OMG! What a scam! There has to be legal action you guys can collectively take. I believe Spinn has promoted this too much to be a scam especially since they’ve sold the machine’s design to Nespresso which they are currently using. Being WiFi connected is tough and they probably really are working out the kinks. Spinn refunded my money last week, I don’t think the same can be said about Arist.

  5. mid-2017 has come and gone. Q1 of 2018 has come and gone. The delivery dates were moved from FAQ to “Pre-order” section of your account settings. When you go there, you get “You’re in the 1st batch! Order shipping date has not yet been announced.”. So we’re actually going backwards in terms of a communicated delivery date. That combined with the constant Spinn marketplace emails to buy whole bean coffee that I can’t do anything with besides chew, provides a waining amount of trust.

    • @David – Agreed: I think it’s the regression that has me most concerned.

      On the other hand, the team continues to send monthly updates complete with pictures and also is still issuing refunds. The biggest red flag for me on following progress of a hardware startup is silence, and Spinn continues to communicate, even if it’s often frustrating. While I don’t know when they’ll ship, I am still hanging in there with the belief they are sincerely trying.

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