Beta Olive Charging Dock work-around #2 (non-soldering method)

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134 comments

  • Waterman Aw

    @George Sjoberg

    Thanks for the update. This is not good news for the future of the company. I guess we're on our own as far a eartips are concerned!

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  • Ihor Pona

    Come on guys!

    Give these guys a break - they are working non-stop to get a product to market and solve one of the major issues: very expensive hearing aids.

    I know because I spent $4000 ears ago - they are no longer working and I am expected to fork out another $4000.

    The Olive works well so far and I can finally hear my turn signals - something I could not do with m previous expensive aids. I can live with the issues knowing the they will be addressed.

    Go and buy a few hearing tips - they are not expensive.

    Have some faith and offer encouragement. 

    They are prototypes meant to provide feedback.

     

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  • Waterman Aw

    @ihor.pona

    You've got a point - in the overall scheme of things, eartips are a small problem - the cost is not the issue. When all is said and done, the Olive is a good low-cost alternative to traditional hearing aids.

    It's more the lack of information that gets me annoyed. It costs nothing to make a general announcement that no eartips can be provided at this time. They were obviously aware of the problem - Why not tell everyone what they can (or can't) do to address it?

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  • jtd

    I am puzzled why you say give them a break. Anyone that has ever developed a product knows full well there will be issues after shipment that they need a reserve to support. You cannot foresee everything. In fact, they kept developing product instead of getting a beta product to market when they could afford to support it. 

    And one time a week before the scheduled deliver they extended 6 -8 weeks. Like that was not known when they were promising to deliver a few weeks before that.  

    They give no indication issues will be addressed and have told people that they are out of money to send ear tips. So every indication I have received is that this is what we will receive. 

    They collected $600K and can't afford to send ear tips with the product. It is not a matter of not having them, they spent all their money and could not ship sets of ear tips. What is that telling you? I don't mind funding prototypes and waiting for errors to be corrected but funding a failed launch because of poor management is a different story. 

     

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  • jtd

    The majority of us bought the units under the understanding that they were delivering a working unit. The prototype portion was for the algorithm. From the Indiegogo Olive Union Page:

    We’ve been developing Olive for the past year and recently finished the engineering process, and everything is prepared for manufacturing. The only thing left is to optimize and tweak the effectiveness of our algorithm so that we can surpass the current hearing aids on the market and deliver flawless hearing experiences at an accessible price. 

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  • Carol Townsend

    I've done all the work-arounds, I've charged it, reset it, turned it on, re-cradled it, etc. Still not working well.

    My issues are:
    Works for less than 5 minutes after a full charge
    Lots of "hiss"
    Often does not turn off with the press of the button
    Has to re-sync after every charge; phone does not "remember" and automatically connect w/ Olive
    Amplification seems to be extremely good for noises w/in 1-1.5 meters. After that, sounds are no better than my normal hearing. 

    The one good thing: size is fine. I've got small ears; the Olive does not fall out for me. But then, I can't use most earbuds because they're too big and hurt my ears.


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  • Rolland Rice

    Hey! I'm not trying to defend anyone. Everyone needs to remember that we are Beta Testers. We're trying to develop an inexpensive method to overcome hearing impairment. My cost of getting into this testing program was insignificant, compared to the cost of other hearing aids. That being said, I had to buy new batteries and install them, which was an additional cost to me of $15. I chose to take that option, the 2 main options stated in this forum are free. What I gained was a few hours of insight into what the Olives COULD become.

    I reported all of my experiences and concerns with the customer service staff and they did respond. I, like many, others would like it if they would communicate in this forum much beter than they have. After all WE, including Olive Union are in testing mode. We the users are publishing our experiences with the Olive, Olive Union needs to communicate about what they have found with us.

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  • Ihor Pona

    Thank you for illustrating all of our roles in this venture, and establishing  what is clearly the hope and goal: ".....what the Olives COULD become." 

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  • jtd

    I totally disagree that we should give them a break. They were obligated to furnish a minimum viable product which means a working product. Beta users are used to make a product better, not make it work.  

    They extended delivery with reasons like longer battery life, added speaker, etc. which means they were adding features, arguably untested, which adds to the complexity of delivery. This also added to the cost which is a major issue for them now. 

    You can say the cost was insignificant but you can buy very good hearing amplifiers for this same price. You can also purchase relatively the same product for $400 or so I believe. There are similar configurations being released in the near future in that $400 range. However, Olive as of yet has not furnished a working product at any price. 

    Rolland, what is the part number for the battery you purchased? What type was it and where did you find it? If it was this simple, was this recommended before? Did I miss it? 

     

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  • Ihor Pona

    Okay rant, if that seems to be your purpose.

    Your comments are not argument as the purpose of argument is progress not victory.

     

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  • jtd

    Ihor, I appreciate your advice and outlook. Let's see where Olive goes. 

     

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  • George Sjoberg

    Wait a minute folks. I’m not ranting. I reported OU’s response to my beta report and my surprise to that response. If you were doing a beta on a great, high tech running shoe would you expect every beta tester to get the same size shoe? Lest we forget, the earbuds are the interface between the device and the human. That interface must be part of the beta test.

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  • Waterman Aw

    You're correct, of course, but at this point there's really nothing we can do but get our own tips (and hooks, in my case) and move on. I just wish that OU had explained their position to everyone affected in a timely manner. As you say, the lack of a secure interface can make an otherwise good product very difficult to use.

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  • Waterman Aw

    I am having another problem with the Olive, and I wonder if others have had this experience. I charge the Olive until the unit stops flashing. When I use it immediately it shows a charge level of 90% or greater and works for nearly four hours, as expected. However, when I charge it, unplug it, (Olive stays in the dock) and then don't use it for a day or two, I find that the charge level has dropped to only 10% - 15%! Is this a battery issue, a circuitry issue, or what? Any ideas anyone?

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  • Charles Lefebvre

    @Waterman,

    Did you turn off the Olive?

    If not, it's on standby and discharging at time goes on.

     

    FYI

     

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  • Waterman Aw

    I hadn't thought of that - Thanks!

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  • Dimitrios Papapostolu

    DAAAAMN ;)

    I always thought I cannot do any handwork.. now I did this and I am hyped :)

     

    Thanks

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  • Larry Ganz

    I’d rather pay for a working battery than go out and buy a 10x loupe and knife, knowing I’ll still manage to destroy the charger. I’m not that skilled - I have arthritis and shaky hands. Is there an equivalent battery that might work, like one for an iPod Shuffle? I know people with the Fossil Palm Pilot watch fixed theirs with the shuffle battery.

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  • jtd

    I would think the Olive people could choose a few batteries on Amazon and recommend.

    I purchase one and it did not solve any charging problems for me. I also found the original battery they used for about $2 over in China but doubt that I can order one or 2 from that group.

    Someone above did a battery replacement and I had asked for a part number but they never replied.   

    Not sure exactly what the battery replacement would do? I guess there is not a direct charge from the USB to the earpiece through the circuit. So if you replace the battery do you still need to cut resistor?

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  • Larry Ganz

    One of the little rubber tabs that holds the olive in the cradle is missing. I had thought that’s why this wasn’t charging. I’m very disappointed there was no email communication telling us about this charging issue, no instructions at all in the box on how to make beta reports, and we had to go out online to figure out how to find support. Not a good way to start the beta test.

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  • Rolland Rice

    The problem with the Olives is that the battery has completely discharged during shipment. They should not have shipped the Olives in their cradles. The software was defective in that there was no fail-safe built in for battery discharge. When LiPo batteries completely discharge they can't be recharged. When you buy a new battery, it is already partially charged. I purchased a new battery at my local hobby shop. They are used in quadcopters. So find a shop that sells a lot of RC. I can't give you the number because I've shipped my Olives back to Olive. But it was quite easy to find. I just clipped the Olive battery (as close to the battery as possible) and brought it with me to the hobby shop. They had a number of sizes, one of them was exactly the same as the olive battery. Placement is simple, clip the terminals from the new battery. (They probably won't be the same as the olive's terminals.) Strip the wires on the new battery, strip the wires in the olive and twist them together. If you want a more permanent connection, solder the twisted wires. Cover the connection with electrical tape. Your Olive will then take a full charge after installing the new batteries.

    But the problem is that the Olive will drain the new batteries and then you'll have to replace them again.

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  • Daniel

    @Rolland Rice - "I've shipped my Olives back to Olive."  Is Olive Union giving out RMAs for their defective units?  Or did you just mail them back?

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  • Rolland Rice

    Olive requested that I ship my (2) Olives back for research. I shipped them on Oct 24. I reported that they bricked and were completely unresponsive . I had only been able to use them for about 6-8 hours total.

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  • Daniel

    @ Rolland Rice - Did Olive Union ship you new ones that worked?  On Indiegogo, December 2017 is still listed as final product shipping.

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  • Rolland Rice

    No. They stated they will supply me with working Olives, when available. I'm waiting.

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  • Daniel

    @Rolland Rice - Olive Union had this to say about replacements of the cradles:

    "we too (OU) agree that the best solution is to provide every backer with new cradles. Unfortunately right now, we don't have any left ... we will produce new cradles and distribute them...

    Let's hope we soon receive the new re-engineered cradles to replace the once we had to partly destroy to fix their problems.

    I am also hoping for a redesign of the Olive to address the numerous complaints about their poor fit for the ears.  They should be anatomically designed differently for fitting into the left or right ear canal.

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  • jtd

    I have not heard a thing from Olive Support for weeks on this thread. Just wondering if they respond here at all?

    Also, I doubt financially they can do the above -mentioned rework. That seems a stretch from previous comments. 

    Are the olives working for anyone? Somewhat apprehensive asking that as I think someone would have chimed in before. And by asking this without someone volunteering, I wonder if I get real people versus someone with a vested interest. Not ranting, but just skeptical on the research that I have done. 

    Anyone willing to share a good story?

     

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  • Rolland Rice

    Daniel,

    I fully expect to receive the next generation, I got that from Olive's support . Hopefully with all of the issues learned from this first version's failures.

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  • Ihor Pona

    This Olive group is naive and, not sophisticated.

    They are however, sincere in their responses.

    Their grasp does exceed their reach (December rollout? Nope), but I truly believe that they will succeed.

    At this point venting, expressing unhappiness, dissatisfaction, anger is understood but not helpful - they know the frustrations we all have as contributors/investors. 

    It clear they lack the resources that well established corporations (Resound, Oticon, Phonak, Starkey) have. They may also have pressures we may not know about. This is an upstart company, a David and Goliath situation.

    Any comments or evaluations submitted, need to be fair and objective with the goal of arriving at a useable product.

    We are on David's team.

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  • Rolland Rice

    I agree with you 100%. I knew what I was getting into when I invested a small amount into the development. I rather like being part of the beta testing group. I like challenges, I hope the Olive Union does too. Hopefully they weren't too badly over extended. Please be honest and objective in any feedback. We want to get it right the next time!

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