Firmware and software updates
We’ve made substantial progress in all of the key areas over the past 2 months and have already rolled out a couple of app and firmware updates that address some of the common complaints and feedback. The latest firmware update with the version 1.0.0 will start rolling out today to 10% of all devices and we’ll gradually increase that to reach everyone in the upcoming week
We’ve begun scaling back from the heightened configuration used in our initial firmware releases and are now confident in making the first changes toward longer operation on a single battery charge without impacting the number of postcards we are able to generate.
On average we are expecting to see ~30% improvement in battery savings compared to our previous release. In practice, that means you can expect a battery life of 4-5 days depending on how much bird traffic you have at your Bird Buddy. More significant improvements to come in the update after that which you can read more about below.
Postcard image distribution
Based on your feedback we’ve adjusted the image distribution inside a single postcard-taking session to be more spread out to avoid tight groupings of images if a bird visitor stays for a prolonged period of time.
This should ensure that you get a wider variety of photos within the same postcard taking session, rather than ones that look identical to one another.
Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA3-Personal) support
Once your device is updated to v1.0.0 you will be able to connect it to WPA3 protected Wi-Fi networks. We are looking forward to your feedback on how this performs on your home networks.
Over The Air update
We’ve implemented some improvements and bug fixes that address the OTA firmware update process and resolve the issues some of you have experienced and reported to our support team, such as getting stuck on the firmware update screen indefinitely and being unable to access any other part of the app.
Beyond this, we’re already internally testing the release that will come after this one where the main focus is significantly extending the battery life. Our goal is to start rolling it out in a few weeks and the initial results show that it consumes roughly 5-15% of battery power per day depending on how much traffic you have at your feeder.
In practice that should translate to 7 to 20 days of uptime and especially for those with solar roofs it could extend it indefinitely provided you get enough direct sunlight every couple of days.
Shipping to Europe
We finally received the required registration to be able to import your Bird Buddies into France from where the final fulfillment for Europe and UK will be done through our 3PL(3rd party logistics) partner.
One final obstacle remains to be able to ship out of France across Europe but we expect that to clear in the next few days. We apologize again for the delay and thank you for your incredible show of patience.
The vessel carrying your Bird Buddies is scheduled to arrive on the 3rd of December (delayed from 28th of November which was initially projected) and our goal is to start shipping the following week.
With a little luck, most of the orders will be fulfilled before Christmas and we’ll do our best to expedite as much as we can. We’ll keep you posted on the progress similar to how we did that when shipping to your friends in the US.
Video postcards coming soon
Now that we’ve made significant progress in all key areas, we’re getting everything ready to release the video postcards feature sometime in December. Photos are beautiful but being able to see birds up close being beautiful, goofy, clumsy or mean is something else. As a sneak peek we’re sharing a video of a couple of Blue Jays flying in and out to feast from one of our team members in Michigan.
Bird Buddy will keep getting better
Your feedback is incredibly important to us and we’re making significant investments in growing the support and community management team so we can be there for you when you need us. We’re really sorry for taking so long to get back to some of you.
We were struggling over the past few weeks to quickly address any of the issues as they popped up and support anyone who is having a hard time setting up or using their Bird Buddies. We were not sufficiently prepared for this fast of a ramp up.
Having said that we’re committed to doing better on all fronts and continuously improving every aspect of Bird Buddy. You can expect your Bird Buddy to keep getting better for a long time to come.
Those of you that are struggling to set yours up, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. We’re literally doubling the support team next week so our time to get back to you and help you solve your issues should drastically improve in the near future.