There has been a lot of drone news in the past few years, so I won’t hold it against you if you don’t remember the Lily. The idea was that you could simply throw the drone up into the air and it would follow you around while you did all sorts of fancy activities worthy of a Mountain Dew commercial. However, after collecting tens of millions of dollars worth of presale, the company has announced that it’s shutting down and will be refunding buyers.
The project actually started three years ago, but was publicly announced back in 2015. The problem seems to have popped up at the manufacturing level, which isn’t all that uncommon. Other products like the GnarBox (which I personally backed on Kickstarter more than a year ago) have faced long delays thanks to manufacturing hangups.
If you bought a Lily drone, you should expect to see a refund to your credit card in the next 60 days or so. Though, it has been a long time, so they also have a form to fill out if your credit card has since expired. Yikes.
Pre-ordering a product is a pretty risky thing. There are a few high-profile photo products meant to come to market soon, like the interesting Light camera, which uses an array of capture devices to make unique images. It will be interesting to see what delivers and what falls flat.
This story was actually pointed out to me by a reader who ordered the drone after seeing it here on the site, so it’s very sad to see things fall apart like this.