Desptie attracting more than 10,000 investors, the ‘3D audio headphone’ project has come to an end.
After taking thousands of crowdfunded pre-orders on the Kickstarter website, for a high-end pair of Virtual Reality ready ‘3D sound’ headphones, the audio startup Ossic suddenly announced earlier this week that the company has ran out of money, and that backers will not be receiving refunds, and in many cases their headphones either.
More than 10,000 investors
All told, some 10,200 people invested in the Kickstarter start-up and raised almost $3 million. The Ossic X was sold as “the world’s first 3D audio headphone that instantly calibrates to the listener”, and was supposed to usher in the next era in audio listening, and featured a raft of sensors and had six microphones. The headphones also featured head-tracking support for proper placement of audio in a virtual space.
Ossic’s campaign however seems to have suffered from accounting issues, and the dreaded feature creep, citing the addition of new goals during the last year such as supporting additional features for mobile devices.
Ossic wrote in an open letter to its investors that it was shutting down and would not deliver any remaining orders for Ossic X headphones. The company also said that it had explored several other financing options over the past 18 months but would still need more than $2 million more to complete mass production.
The letter stated: “Over the last 18 months, we have explored a myriad of financing options, but given VR’s slow start and a number of high profile hardware startup failures, we have been unable to secure the investment required to proceed. This was obviously not our desired outcome. The team worked exceptionally hard and created a production-ready product that is a technological and performance breakthrough. To fail at the 5 yard-line is a tragedy. We are extremely sorry that we cannot deliver your product and want you to know that the team has done everything possible including investing our own savings and working without salary to exhaust all possibilities”.
At the time of writing, it was unclear if a miracle last minute investor had stepped in to save the company.