Are we stuck on Particle?

Hi,

I’m working on a commercial product for the smart home market.
As I was not into the IoT market before, I have found in Particle a very powerful and easy way to prototype.
But now I have to define If I stick on Particle or not to work on the final prototype before industrialisation.

Pros : No need to rebuilt the embedded software from scratch, rapid time to market using a P0 or P1 chips, I really love Cloud suite (very easy to manage devices and interconnect with APIs)

Cons : Chips are >10$ and Cloud also seems expensive to me (~ 20$ for 5 years use /device). Particle OS is only available in combination with Particle hardware.

The perfect solution for me would be to start commercializing a product with Particle, but being able to switch to another embbed software & cloud in case of product success for lowering the costs.

–> Problem is, it seems a bad idea to maintain 2 OS/Software versions of the same product in parallel.
–> Is there possibilities to migrate a product based on Particle to another OS if needed ?

What do you think ?
Thank you for your help !

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@pierreantoine, have you considered discussing this with the Particle folks. They offer commercial discounts for volume purchasing. They work with a LOT of commercial/enterprise clients so they are not new at this.

3 Likes

Thanks, you are right I will contact them.
But I’m still open to have the community point of view / experiences :slight_smile:

@pierreantoine Nice to e-meet you! My name is Nick and I work on the Business Development team here at Particle. I would be more than happy to chat with you about possible solutions if you want to DM me: nicholas@particle.io

Looking forward to chatting.

What is your business model for this product? If you are selling a product with only a 1-time fee to the customer, then you may be right that the Particle services are too expensive for your product. Perhaps that initial 1-time fee needs to be higher to offset your cloud support over the product’s life time. Have you even estimated the product useful life time? (which you probably need to in order to estimate total overhead cost over that time frame.)

Do you expect this product to depend on the Particle cloud for the product’s continued functionality. What cloud do you envision is cheaper per device? What is your acceptable yearly/monthly fee per device? You aren’t looking at Particle to provide cloud as a free service do you? After all, any cloud has servers, datacenters, Internet Service Providers, bandwidth fees, insurance, SLA’s, etc. that all cost money.

If your business model is for a subscription-type of product, are your targeted customers so price sensitive that a few cents per month/per device is too much to ask? If so, is this really a viable business model? Is your targeted customer base really a good target? If your customers are not that price sensitive, then a subscription model could also contain some markup to make the ongoing device support a revenue center instead of a cost center.

4 Likes

Hi @pierreantoine,

That’s a great question! We don’t want to lock anyone into anything, our goal is to be the best platform for you all the way from prototyping to production. We do our best to offer an incredible service, value, and tools with the kind of performance and reliability you can count on at scale. :slight_smile:

We know that not every business model can account for recurring costs, and that’s where our sales team can help talk about your use case and explore what options are available.

Thanks,
David

2 Likes

Thank you all for your answers.

@Njgage, I will contact you on your email.

@ninjatill this is a one shot buyin product for B2C. It’s hard to evaluate, but for BP purposes we estimated product lifetime on 5 years.
An example of popular solution on the smart home market would be to go with an ESP32 + MongooseOS / FreeRTOS / or Zerynth combinated to AWS Cloud. It’s hard to evaluate the overall cost here but it’s probably one of the cheaper solution.

But this would mean much more initial investment in development for us and as I said stayin with Particle would be a #1 choice without regards on costs.