Wyze Fails To Deliver Own On-Board Analytics, Launches Novel Name Your Own Price Service

By Zach Segal, Published Jul 24, 2020, 09:12am EDT (Info+)

While Wyze failed to deliver their own onboard analytics to replace the removed XNOR.ai ones, Wyze has now launched a novel to the security industry, name your own price service for its new cloud analytics.

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Inside this note, we examine what happened, what this means for Wyze, how name your own price might be successful and why there is an argument that this is "bait-and-switching" that they promised not to do 8 months ago.

Executive *******

*********.** ********** ****, **** *** ** ****** ****.** from ***** *** ********. ** ******* this, **** ******* ** **-***** ** team *** **** **** *** **** to ********* ****.**'* ******* ***** ************ chips ** *** ********* ** *** edge *** ******* *** ****** ** rely ** *** *****. **** ***** WYZE *** ** *** ********* ***** to ******** *** *********; *****, **** they ***** ** **** ****** ************** when ********* **** ****** ********* ***** be ****. ** *** *** **** their ******* ***** ***** *********** ******, WYZE ** ******** *** ******** **** a "**** **** ***** *****" (***** users *** ** **** ** **** want, ********* *******) ** ********* *** joined ****** ******** ****, ****. *** newer *********, ****** ********* **** **** be ********* ********** ****, ***** ***** $*.** * *****.

********* ** ****, ** **** ** released

** ********* **** *** ******* *.**

Financial ****** *** ****

***** **** **** **** **** ********* now ******* *** *****,**** ******* ** *** **** ********* **** they ******* *** **** ** **** do *** ****** **** **** ** out ** ********:

***bad **** ** **** **’* **** ********* to run, and the costs are recurring. We greatly *****-********** *** ******* ***** ***** when we started working on this project last year (we’ve also since hired an actual finance guy…). The reality is we will not ** **** ** ****** ***** ***** *** **** ** ********. [emphasis added]

Price *** ****

*** ********* **** ** ******** ** Cam **** ***** ***** $*.** * month *** ***** *** ****** ***** November **, **** (**** **** ********* XNOR.ai *********** ***** *********).

**********, **** ***** **** $*.** ***** more **** ***** *** ******* **** of ******* ****** ********* ******* *** Plus ***** **** ***** ******** ** well. ** *** ** *** ******** 1.3 ******* ***** **** **** $*.** per *****, **** ***** ** ~$** million ** *******. ** **********,**** **** **** ********** $** *******.

******* ********* ***** *** ** ** positive ***** ***** ********* ********, *** admission **** them *** ** ******** ** ********. It ** **** * ****** ********** that **** **** **** ***** ******* with ******* ********** ******* ****** ~** employees*** ********.

Their ******** *** ******** ****, **** *********

** ***** ** **** ***** ******* of **** ****** ********* *** "**** in ********", **** *** ******** * novel *** ** ******* ****** *********. F** *** *.* ******* ***** ********* who **** **** ************ ****** ***, **** *** ********* * ****-****-***** where ********* *** *** ** **** (or ******) ** **** ****:

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**** ****** ********* *** **-****** ***** videos ********** ********, *** **** ** able ** **** **** *****. *** can ****** $* *** *** ** for ****. ** *** ***make ******* ************* ** ******** ****** *** ***** **’* ***** to help us cover our recurring cloud costs. We will reevaluate this method in a few months. If the model works, we *** ******** ******* ** *** ** *** ***** and maybe even extend it to other Wyze services. [emphasis added]

********, **** ** *********** ****** **** 'pay **** *** *****' * ****** part ** ***** ********:

**’** ****** **** ********* ****** **** is **** *** ** *** ******* we ****. ********* ******* ********* **** what *** ** *** *********** *** doing. * ****** ** ***** *** cost ** ******* ******** ** * way **** ** ***** ***** ******* with *********, *** ********* ***** ******* with **.

Disneyland *******

*************, ****** **** ** ********* ** *************** **** * ****-****-***** ***** *** merchandise *** ******** ** * **** indicated **** **** ******will *********** *** *** *** *********** ** **** ***'* **** **, leading ** ********* ****** *** ** increased ******:

**** ************ ***** *** **** **** wanted, *** **** ********** ********* ******* a ********* **** *** ************* **** profitable. ********* **** ********* ****** ************** to **** ** **** ****** ****** responsibility ***** ** **** ******* ********** contributions ***** ********* ** ******** ******* social ******* ******** ******* *** ********** of ******** *****.

Low ****

** ********, $*.** * ***** ** a *** ****** **, ** ** possible **** ********* **** *********** *** enough ** **** **** **** ****’* cloud *****. *** *******, **** ** many ********* ****** ** *** *******, some *** *** $* ** $** essentially *********** *** ******** ***** *** do *** ***.

Will *** ******* ***** ******

*****. *** ******** **************** **** ****-****-*** ******* *** *** potential ** ******** ******* ******* ******** sales. ** *** **** ** ***-********-**** offerings (**** ** * ******* ********** of ****-***** ** * **** ** cloud-based ********* **** *********** *&* *****, but ********* ***** **** *** ********** small ******** ** ******** *****) ***** could **** ***** ********* ** * product **** ****** **** *** *** company. *******, ** ***** **** ** cover ****'* *****, *** **** ** it ****, *** ******* ***** ***** not **** ** **** *** **** expensive *****, ******** *** *********.

*******, ** ******* ** *** ****, it ***** ******** ******* ** *********** new ***** ** **** ** *** the *******.

What **** ********* *****

*** **** ****** ******** **** *********** and *********

**** **** *** ****** ** **** look ****? *** ******** ************ *****? Prices ****** ** *** ********? *** of ********? **** ** ***** ******* mean *** *****?

*** ***** **** * ****** **** makes ****** ********* ** **** **** cloud-intensive **** ***** *****/*************

** ***** * ********* ****** **** such ********* ********** ******’* ** **** by * ** ** *** **** LAN?

***** $* * ***** ***** ** or *** ** ******* **** ****? I **** ***** ********** **** ** the ******… ***** ** ** ** some *****.

*** **** ***** **** ** **** Wyze *** ****** ********* ** *** 10 ** ** ** **.

**** ******** **** ************* ********:

** * **** ** *** * subscription *** ** *******, **** *’** probably ***** ******* ** ***** *******.

...** * ** ***** ** **** to *** * *** ***** *** each ****** * ***** ** **** [have] **** **** **** *** ****** up *** $$ *** ** *** gate

**’* *** ** **** **** **** Cams **** ****** **** ******* ************ service.

*******, **** **** ******** ** *******:

********** *** ************.

* **** ** ********* ***** ** donate ** *** ***** ... * do ***** **** *********** ******* ... I ** ********** ******* ** ***** and **** **** **** [****]

* ****** ** *** **** ***** it **** **** ******, ****** * am **** **** **.

* ***’* *** * **** ***** the ***** *****

Lawsuit? '**** *** ******'

*** ******* ****** *** ******* ** a ******* ******:

** *** **** ** ***** ******* liability ***’* **** ** **** ** free *** *** ******** ** ** the **** ** **** ************. **** of ****** ***** ******** **** ****** Wyze **** *** ******* ** **** person *********.

*** ***** **** ****** ** ******* is **** ** *** **** * months, **** **** ****** **** ******** under *** ******* **** **** *** made ** **** ***** ********* ****.

**** **** **** ****.**,**** ********:

******* **’** *** ** *** ******** of ****-***-********* *** ***** *** **’** made * ******* ** *** **** Person ********* ***** ** * **** feature.

***** **** **** **** **** *** in *** ******** ** ****-***-*********, ** could ** ****** **** **** *** now ***** **** ****.

Other ********* **********

** ********, **** *****:

**** ******* ****** *****, * ***** of ********** ******** **** *** ***********, and ** ********* *******, **’** **** forced ** ****** **** ** *** plans

******* **** ****** ** *****-****** ***-****** ***** *** ******* *****, * **% ****** ***** ********** wipe *** ***** ******. *******, **** has *** ********* ******, ******** ** absorb *** ********, ************ *** *****-***** ****** *** $**.** on ***** *******.

***** **** *** ** ** *******: They ****** $**.** *** * ****** with ******* ~$** ** ******** **** China **** ********* * ***-****** $* Plusfit ******, ** * **% ****** would **** ** ~**% **** ** Plusfit *** * ****** ** $.**.

****

Comments (25)

I think the Disney comparison is a bit apples to oranges.

When people are at Disney, they are on vacation and expecting to spend a bunch of money which they have probably saved up and budgeted for. It is a one-time cost and if they are having a good experience then they are likely to chip in a little. Generally speaking this is probably a positive experience they don't mind paying for.

Wyze is just another monthly subscription, when people think about how much they are willing to pay they are thinking about all the other subscription services they have, their monthly budget and wondering if they need another one. In my view this will generate negative experiences for most customers, especially since it goes against what Wyze has also said in the past

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Thank you for the comment. Many of the comments in WYZE's forum echoed the sentiment you are bringing up.

With the Disney example, I was trying to show that there is evidence for this model generating revenue, not that it would make customers happy (although the paper suggested it could have that effect).

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Let's see....I paid what? $29.00 for the camera? Am I the type person to spend $1.49 a month to then make it work when I was told the feature was free?

Of course, they could follow others and just end the service. Sorry, feature no longer available, we will refund the pro-rated balance of your warranty period. Please send in your information and you will receive a check for $.09 and a coupon for $8.00 towards your next Wyze purchase.

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That’s a good point about the monthly cost vs the device price. In less than 2 years, this service would cost more than the device itself so maybe people who paid ~$20 will object to even $1.50 a month.

Related the take rate for such add on services has been low for Arlo the closest publicly traded competitor.

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I am a Wyze fan. I have several products of theirs. As others have said it's a $20 camera. Sure they promised free person detection and haven't been able to deliver. Sure they want to charge now and they don't know exactly what to charge.

Again it's a $20 camera. I would hope most folks who buy a $20 camera don't expect any bells and whistles. I don't even care if they promised them. Again it's a $20 camera.

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I disagree. It should not matter if the camera is $10 or a $100. When a company says its going to do something,it should honor it. If the company cant deliver, pro rate based on the expected life of electronics (2 years) and offer me option for money back. I can then make a descion if i need to keep or return my $20 camera.

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The written published warranty is 12 months. The could offer the option of either the service for free until the warranty expired or a pro-rated warranty from date of purchase through warranty.

I don’t see why they would offer more.

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Warranty does not equal expected lifespan. When you purchase a product & are told that, in this case, no ongoing fees etc it is a reasonable to expect that this is true for the expected lifespan of the product.

What is the expected lifespan of the product, personally, taking into account it is a cheapy, I would say 3 years. Therefore 3 years of full functionality, no ongoing costs or my money back.

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Did the article mention WHEN the “pay to play” analytics would launch? I’ve looked the article over a couple of times and didn’t see a release date. I’m pre Nov19, so am interested.

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“in September with app release 2.13” according to WYZE. Thank you for bringing this up. I’ve updated the article.

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Thanks Zach...sorry viewing from my phone, so may have missed it.

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Wyze boldly goes where one man has gone before:

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I don't believe the 1,49$ is sustainable at all.Having worked with all 3 major and a few minor cloud A.I. providers (Google, Microsoft, Amazon being the major ones) especially with "motion detection based video clips" being sent to the cloud @ 12 seconds per clip already comes in around ~0.8 cents per clip.This seems pretty low, but there are also other costs involved dependant on which cloud service provider is used:- Data transfer ingress- Data transfer egress- Data storage

And of course their normal monthly overheads.

A decent motion detector still detects many clips per day, and as they can't seem to make person classification possible on their current hardware it seems every clip will have to be uploaded.

with a Bosch camera we currently have installed there's over 40 clips per day in a closed garden (birds, spiders, people, wind, ...) during rainfall well over 100 clips, which would already destroy the MSRP cloud analytic pricing

There is another problem in countries with bandwidth limits and slow uploads, where it might take a while for the video to be uploaded, and even worse it could lead to the customers bandwidth being capped due to a bandwidth cap.

All in all I don't think this is a viable way for them to keep operating.

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I agree, the company I work for tried a WiFi camera a couple years ago with some cloud based storage and analytics. We had a couple subscription plans but we were still getting buried under the licensing and infrastructure costs. It may have gotten better if we had more subscribers but as it was we pulled the plug fairly quickly.

Having said that, Wyze figured out how to make a decent WiFi camera and sell it for $20 - and my wife likes her $25 Wyze band better than she liked her $200 FitBit - so maybe Wyze will figure out how to do analytics in the cloud for cheap as well.

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In argument to the Disney example, Panera bread tried this and failed...

Why Panera’s experiment with pay-what-you-want dining failed

I have multiple Wyze cameras in use, in addition to an IP/POE powered NVR based system. If they couldn't make it work, they shouldn't have sold the feature. Telling everyone they would fix it in house and not doing so just makes them look bad. Maybe less scales/smartwatches/masks/lightbulbs and try to focus on what you started out to do...

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The Panera example is interesting. It's hard to say what situation is more similar to Wyze's current one. Wyze can't make up revenue on lower per-transaction price through volume like Disney, but they are able to take losses of some nature unlike Panera and don't have to worry about maintaining a certain "atmosphere" as Panera did.

And this analytic might actually be farther from what they've done in the past than a scale, watch, etc.

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I think the best comparison would be Wink. I never understood how Wink would survive and even though I ponied up for the monthly fee, Wink hasn’t lit the world on fire.

Companies such as Wink still work, but they pissed off clients by crappy customer support, lost integration with MyQ...

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As I said I am a Wyze fan but their early access gift makes me 2nd guess my thought on Wyze. They can't afford AI cloud processing but they can afford to send out 50,000 genuine plastic cowboy hats for their new outdoor cam.... hhhrrrmmm

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...why would anybody put a cowboy hat on a camera?

Genuinely puzzled at what Wyze was thinking here.

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...genuine plastic cowboy hats...

is that a 1/10 gallon hat?

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This is the low cost disruptor version of the wanna be cloud camera disruptor's that give away Yeti's.

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That would be a 1 shot cowboy hat!

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I have a couple Wyze Cam Pans in my lab. I thought that they might be good for use with a VMS with the streaming firmware, but alas, they do not work with all NVR products. They did work with WAVE 4.0 and I was able to use motion detection built in to WAVE. The license costs more than the camera. The picture quality is just as good as some of the $200 2MP cameras, just not good for outdoors, and certainly no good for any serious system for security. A good observation camera, nanny cam, or temporary camera. It might even work for a church!

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I'm a Wyze cam owner, and I think the value proposition for these devices are incredible. I initially purchased without the expectation of person detection. When they formed their partnership with Xnor.ai I thought it elevated the product even further. It was unfortunate that their partnership dissolved and rather abruptly.

While I applaud them attempting to re-create Xnor's success, it was a mistake for them to make it a promise and doubly so at no cost. Now, I feel they are obligated to offer $0+ monthly cloud processing for owners prior to this announcement.

I believe their relative transparency and strong value has created a lot of good will for Wyze. I think they have enough good will capital to absorb this cost.

Personally, I will do without the people detection. It wasn't a feature I required and so I likely won't contribute to their expenses nor my own to leverage it.

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Update: Meet Cam Plus Lite, a service that brings you 12-second Event recordings and Wyze Person Detection at whatever price you choose, including $0.

Starting February 15th, only cameras opted into Cam Plus or Cam Plus Lite will have Event video recordings saved to the cloud. Remember, opting into Cam Plus Lite can be at any price, including $0. If you don’t opt in, then we’ll transition your cameras to store thumbnails of what was detected instead of 12 seconds of recorded video. There’s no hard deadline here, you can opt in whenever you’d like, but just remember that Event videos will stop being recorded on February 15th for those who don’t opt in. We will send you lots of reminders.

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