Would someone from FRS care to comment?

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  • Updated 4 years ago
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I have been a long time Flex supporter. I've owned an SDR1000, Flex 5000a and now a Flex 6500. I, like many of you, would like some answers from FRS. You might say, well, we don't owe you any explanation, but you do. I'm your customer and have a right to know some details about a system I've invested in based on company statements of future development. We've all actually invested in a beta system that has non-developed standard features and with a promise from FRS to add those features in a timely manner. 

Would someone from FRS answer:

  • Not being able to stick to your date schedule development timeline, we now have no firm calendar as to when features are going to be added. It could be 2 years between releases based on your latest rollout criteria of "when bugs are gone and the software is ready". Please publish a roadmap. We have to know when to expect standard features and updates.
  • How many people do you have dedicated to software engineering and development? (please don't include administrative staff)
  • How are future communications going to be handled with your customers about features and timeline for deployment of software?
  • Is FRS willing to employ additional software developers and engineers to ensure your product gets out the door in a timely manner in the future? A lot of us have invested a lot of money in FRS and the very least you could do is show us you are addressing the problems incurred with this 6000 software rollout debacle. 

I'm sure others have questions as well. I would appreciate your honest answers to my above questions and concerns.

James, W8GN
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James Watts

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Posted 4 years ago

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Mike va3mw

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James

As someone who works in the software industry, I know what these delivery times are like.  All I can say on Flex's behalf is that I know they are working flat out on the latest release, and I know it can be frustrating if you are a customer waiting on that release.  There are literally scores of beta testers shaking it down each day. 

However, it is much worse if a product is released prematurely as I am sure you can understand.  The blow back is difficult to manage and the company looses face.

I can also speak from my professional experience working with Software Product management for a fortune 500 company, that we all want 'features and functionality' with all new software.  But, we have to make sure that product stability is an absolute requirement first.  There is no sense releasing a product if it can't run all day and do what it is advertised to do.  We have all seen that with many software products.  Microsoft has made this mistake more than once.

Planning for software release is difficult.  It isn't like hardware manufacturing when it is easy to plan for a delivery date.  It can be 'it will be finished when it is finished'.  

I'm sure Gerald will reply, but I know that there are a lot of people burning the midnight oil to get the next release out the door with all the toys that go with it and the stability to run without issue.  But, they want to do it right the first time.  Even then there will be issues with some users.

I know this won't likely get you the answer you wish, but I hope it helps a little.  

Mike va3mw
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Barry Comer

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As a fellow customer that has also put my hard earned money on the table there is something to add. The relationship I have with FRS is a little different then when I bought my FT950. Let me explain, the FT950 was what I would call "feature complete". All features of what is considered "normal" on a radio at this point in the time-line were there and working. With the 6500 that feature list was not complete at the time of purchase. That difference makes the relationship with FRS a little off the beaten path and requires an above level of communication with the customer base.

It is critical to keep the communication open and not become an "us and them" community. Customers are expressing their concerns regardless of some extremes and thus is a valuable source of information that can help prioritize the feature delivery list.

I am a long term software developer and am able to see both sides of this issue. FRS should really consider returning to an "approximate" date release schedule. Yes, it requires proper scheduling of prioritized features but gives the customer base an expected road map. I would rather see more "dot" releases as features become available compared to monolithic releases that wedge frustration between FRS and the customer base. Please consider that not all of the customer base has chimed in on the forums. Tough problem to sort out for sure.  

Update: we should understand that some features are what I would call "foundation" in nature. They provide a base on which to add other features. Case in point is remote operation - it will touch several areas and affect how some new features are developed.
(Edited)
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Good points Barry. Flex was trying to set a date in hoping for 1.4 but didn't happen and , well you saw the fallout it caused, they have been called all sorts of names and dragged through the mud.
Even This morning it has started all mover again. So It is no surprise to me the are holding back on much info as I gets turned around on them anyways.

I read all the post and as I see it most except for a few love there Radio's even with not having all the features yet. They have performed very well in contest as well. A lot of very happy Flexer's here. Even with the present state most will say it is still the best radio they ever owned.

But as we have seen there are a few who are waiting for any opening to trash Flex and missed dates is an easy one for them. And I think some are not even Flex owners.

Bill VA3WTB
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Barry Comer

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Thanks, you are right the 6500 is simply awesome and the releases are coming. I made a large number of contacts during the recent ARRL contest with some done close to strong stations - sweet filtering.

Yes, there are trolls in every forum that are here to raise the roof - sad.
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James Watts

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Barry, I enjoy my Flex 6500 as well. It works and will do many things. However, there are many things wrong too. These are the things I think FRS owes it's customer base to discuss openly.

Also, it's very sad you think anyone that questions FRS is a troll.

James, W8GN
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I don't think Berry thinks that, no problem with questions, but some of these people are well known as not excepting the answers Flex post here. Everyone I'm sure understands the delays and why.
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Barry Comer

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Please understand that I do not think all those that question are trolls. The purpose of any forum is to discuss a topic towards improving it. I invite people to make honest contributions that may not always agree with others - just try to be mature and understanding when doing so.
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Steve W6SDM

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Wow!  That is the kind of request that I would expect to see coming from a member of the board of directors to the CEO of a publicly traded company.  If I were Gerald, I wouldn't answer it.  End users do not have a "right to know" the staffing levels in the engineering department.  Neither are they included in the decisions regarding company policy, communications practices, or whatever.  Buying a Flex radio does not make us shareholders or principals in the company.

The level of staff and the targeting of product releases are both items that are financially driven as much as they are technology driven.  Those are issues for the management of the company, not the customers.

As a long-time, multi-Flex customer, I have loved every Flex that I ever bought.  Each one worked the day I got it and got better the longer I owned it.  Everything I bought an paid for was in the box when I opened it.  I wasn't "owed" anything beyond that but I got a whole lot more as time went on.

Flex Radio communicates a hundred times better than any of the other manufacturers of amateur radio equipment.  Their communications are more frequent on both forward-looking features and plans and current issues.  They have already expressed their intention not to put hard dates on development that they may or may not be able to meet for a variety of reasons.  I have a hard time seeing why people can accept that and move on - 1.4 will get here some day.  In the mean time, enjoy your radio.
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K6OZY, Elmer

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Well said, Steve.
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Bob G W1GLV

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Well said. Some of these guys think they own the company. Don't forget, when signed up for this radio it was in development, not a finished product.
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James Watts

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Bob, you are absolutely correct. It was sold as in development but with promises of updates and features added based on a timeline.. This was FRS sales pitch and promise to early purchasers. However, they could not meet that timeline and changed midstream. Since I purchased the radio based on this premise, I am vested somewhat in the company and feel my questions above are reasonable and valid.

James, W8GN
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Corey/ KC0YNS

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Steve, Couldn't have said it better myself!!  Well done....
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M0GVZ

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" Buying a Flex radio does not make us shareholders or principals in the company."

It does however make us customers and ones who have a reasonable right to expect that the vendor meets the deadlines it promised and gives both an explanation and a date when it will meet those it has missed. We have an explanation, we have no date. 

As a software company writing an application for a corporate customer, if you were to handle the situation like FRS have done with v1.4 giving a "it'll be ready when its ready" answer to your paying client, you would find yourself being replaced. 

You can bet your bottom dollar the US Govt who they claim to supply would not accept the answer they've given us in regards to 1.4. There would be at the very minimum financial penalties being incurred assuming they didn't lose the contract.
(Edited)
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Mike va3mw

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Like

Actually, I have more experience in this area than you know.  That was exactly my job for the 2 Fortune 500 companies I worked for.  I delivered this type of message.  Granted, those customers spent millions on software with us.  Since I only spent a few K$ with Flex, I feel their communications aren't bad.  I have also gotten answers from key people when required.  You won't get that from an HP, EMC, Oracle of Microsoft unless you are into a 6 figure project.

And, yes, the US Government was one of my customers.  But, they don't fit this type of profile.  Maybe they liked me because I was polite and I was a Canadian.  :)

I get it.  You want to see the new software.  However, I agree fully with Gerald and delivering it before prime time will be counter productive.  

Patience.  Gerald replied and it won't be long now.  

Mike va3mw
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Lyndy Brannen

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Waiting is tough. All I have invested is the cost of my radio and I have never enjoyed a rig more, must be real tough on the folks who have their lives and financial  future tied up in the outcome.
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James Watts

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I am in the IT industry as well. I understand the problems a company faces, but Flex is different. I AM a stock holder in this company, W6SDM. Flex sold this radio to me and others on the premise we would receive timely updates. That has NOT happened in over 1.5 years. Have they been on schedule for any release? Therefore, the bill of goods I was sold, I have a right to know when to expect the features I was promised. I have a right to know what FRS is doing to correct the problems. I also have a right to know a timeline on when to expect the features I was promised when they sold me the radio because that was a selling point.

I do enjoy using my Flex 6500. I only wish FRS the very best and I've continued to support them by purchasing their equipment. However, it's time they report to their stock holders on how they are addressing the problems and how they are going to deliver the bill of goods they promised.

James, W8GN
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Your dead wrong....
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K2CB Eric Dobrowansky

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Well stated, James.   

It is getting a little tiring watching the Flex Kool-Aid drinkers jump on anyone posting a respectful and deserving question regarding the progress of SmartSDR. Since they purchased a 6000-series radio, in their minds it is the best thing since slice bread, limited functionality is a non-issue, and all other radios are not worthy. Just like any of the other radio models' forums, the majority of members think their radio is above all others. 

If the Flex is their only radio, they may be living in a sheltered world. Well, I have news for them, it is not the best thing since slice bread.  While it is a unique radio, it is limited in functionality, there are bugs with what we do have, and is not the end-all of amateur radio. At best it is a work in progress. There are other high-end radios which perform equally as well.  The Sherwood and ARRL numbers aren't everything to the experience of operating a particular radio.  The K3 is a prime example...... So guys, slow down on your intake of the Flex-flavored beverage!

A number of us were "sold" the same bill of goods when we purchased our 6000 Series radio. I originally had an Anan-100D, and sold it in anticipation of purchasing the Anan-200D when it was initially announced. Once I saw that the 200D had the same hardware shortcomings as the 100D, I made the decision to "jump ship" and go with the 6500, based on the pre-sale conversations I had with the sales staff at Flex. At that time (early 2014), when I questioned the current development progress, I was led to believe that the updates would be delivered at a much faster pace going forward. On top of that, I was led to believe that we would, in good time, have at a minimum, the functionality equivalent to the 5000 series, before a "V2.0" purchase would be necessary.

The way things stand right now, we know what to expect shortly with V1.4.  Based on recent statements, we are led to believe that V1.5 will follow, fixing a number of minor issues, and possibly usable NB/NR functions.  Similar statements also lead us to believe that the next step will be for V2.0, as a chargeable upgrade forecasted for some time in early 2016, revolving around internet remote operations.  Well then, where does that leave all of the other functionality we were led to believe was coming?  I do believe that is a fair question to ask, no?

BTW, I visited the Flex booth at Orlando, and asked about a number of features that I miss from the 5000/HPSDR series, and the answer was not to expect anything anytime soon, other than the aforementioned items. It looks like a feature set similar to the 5000 may be much further off that we were lead to believe.

If some of us had any inclination of the way things have panned out, we may have made other choices. In my case, I can afford to have other high-end radios alongside my 6500, so at the end of the day the limited functionality is a non-issue. But what about Joe-ham who sold all his other gear to invest in a  6500 or 6700? 

Eric

K2CB






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Bob G W1GLV

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Sell your radio and buy an JAP box, that should satisfy you.
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James Watts

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Bob, if that is directed at me, fortunately, I don't have to sell anything to purchase another rig. I can afford any rig I desire or as many of them as I want.

However, my other rig is a Kenwood TS-990s and I didn't have to sell anything to get that JAP box either.

James, W8GN
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K2CB Eric Dobrowansky

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Bob, similar to James, the Flex is only one of many rigs I own.  But that does not satisfy the fact that the Flex is not where we were led to believe it would be by now.

(Edited)
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WA6FXT Mike

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We are *NOT* stock holders, in any sense of the word. We are simply customers.

When I bought my 6700 with all the options, it was over a year before it arrived. I knew up front that this was a development project and signed up for it with my eyes wide open. I wanted to be in on getting a Ground Breaking "Bleeding Edge" toy. (It is a TOY and this is a hobby, and some need to remember that) To be the First On The Block, etc, etc, etc...

I've installed every update and have had a *BALL* checking out the new features, each and every time. and look forward to many more years of updates.

73's de Mike wa6fxt.
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Mike va3mw

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James, are you a stockholder because you own a radio or two or are you a shareholder that has invested a significant amount of money in the company.  If the later, then I am sure you can call Gerald directly.

As an example, I own a bunch of HP stock, but that doesn't enable me to get daily updates on the issues with my printer being fixed.

Gerald has given updates on the progress of 1.4 in the past month, so he has been communicating to the industry.  

The blunt message is that the software will be released when it is ready for prime time.  Since it hasn't been released, I bet it isn't ready for prime time.
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DrTeeth

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An analogy. I start extracting a tooth, I tell the patient it will be out in a second, then a minute and then 5 minutes and then I stay quiet. When they ask when it will be over, I say that it will be out when it's out; result one unhappy patient. This is how FRS has dealt with 1.4.
Patient would have been happier if I would have said at the beginning that I needed to take my time and it will be out as soon as possible; result a happy patient. This is how FRS should move forward.
We all have to work to time scales but it is how we handle the expectation and info flow that matters.
(Edited)
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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A more accurate assessment is that the dentist and patient initially thought that it would be a five minute job, but ran into complications, so the dentist extended the update only to find more complications. The dentist then say this is going to take much longer than I thought and I can't give you an exact time. But the patient keeps badgering the dentist about the initial five minute time estimate and gets so cantankerous, texting all of his friends from the dentist chair, and won't keep his mouth still so that the dentist has difficulty finishing the job.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Are you kidding Ken?  I bet it would be more fun throwing mud at the dentist than changing...
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DrTeeth

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Ken,

That is not the case. At my stage in my career, after 33 years at the enamel face as it were, I can say with a high degree of accuracy how long *any* procedure will last. I also do not give a definite time as to how long it will take...I tell my patients that if I hurry they will not like it and we won't be friends any more.

Your scenario is more appropriate to a newly qualified dentist rather than one that is long in the tooth ;-) <groan>.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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LOL..." if I hurry they will not like it and we won't be friends any more."  I like that, Guy.
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Jay / NO5J

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Guy
What about the patient who gets upset when things take to long, Does he come back later when he receives your bill, demanding you put the tooth back in and give him a full refund? Shouldn't you be allowed a reply similar to, I'm so sorry you feel that way but,,, That's not how any of this works!

73, Jay - NO5J
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DrTeeth

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I have been doing this job for too long for a patient to get upset by how long anything takes. Apart from the odd nutter, all my patients are happy campers.

73 de Guy
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Jay -- N0FB, Elmer

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This is where the dentist /SmartSDR Developer analogy falls apart. As the processors and logic devices employed in the 6000 are new technology (the patient), no one knows how to build/develop the necessary programming without trial and error and building from scratch(operating on the patient). For this analogy to continue, Guy, you would have to stipulate that your Dental patient is an alien from outer-space who's anatomy you have never seen. You have no developed procedures in your experience to draw from, or to relate to, to accomplish your task except for anecdotal or estimate how long it will take for you to accomplish your "tooth extraction'. Any estimation would be a WAG...not even a SWAG.
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Steve W6SDM

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Agreed.  Managing expectations is essential to customer satisfaction.  That's exactly why Flex stopped issuing projected release dates.  Sometimes that tooth is adhered to the jawbone in such a way that extraction takes much longer than anticipated. 

When it gets here, I think we should throw an intercontinental 1.4 release party.  I'm afraid what follows will be demands on when 1.5 will be released and complaints because a feature doesn't work exactly the way someone anticipated.  Such is human nature.
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DrTeeth

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I do not think there will be a problem with 1.5 for reasons that I have mentioned elsewhere. In short, FRS chose a bad time to stay quiet - a much delayed release with an expected delivery date and earlier postings (months ago) inferring that it was nearly ready. Information without mentioning anything time-related is the way to go. I think FRS has learnt the hard way on this one, especially as it looks like a feature was removed followed by rumours that it had been re-instated (FreeDV and Waveform API). Also, more point releases would be better for customer satisfaction/perception, but I cannot say how it would impact on development itself.
(Edited)
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I can see that but with this release point releases were not possible as the software had to be reworked in order to instate remote. During the time of re-working the code for remote there most likely was not a stable time for any release point.
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Kevin J. Mahoney

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I am not a very sophisticated Ham and in fact do not understand some of the seemingly more esoteric features that people ask for. At least esoteric to me. I bought the radio for what it could do not what it might do in the future,  Improvements are a bonus for me. I understand what others are commenting about but my observation is that the folks from Flex communicate with their customer base better than any other radio company out there. Many are impatient which I also understand but for me I am giving Flex the benefit of the doubt.
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Gene - K3GC

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Thanks Kevin,
You said exactly what I wanted to say.
I bought my 6700 for what it could do the day I took it out of the box. 
Yes, I like to idea of updates and more features but that has nothing with my enjoyment of a fantastic radio in the meanwhile.
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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Official Response
James,

We appreciate that you have been a long time supporter of FlexRadio.  

There is not a great deal that I can add other than what Steve and I have posted here before.  I will, however summarize a few points that have been made here on multiple previous occasions:
  1. We first published a public road map for SmartSDR in the summer of 2013.  V1.0, v1.1, and v1.2, were exactly on schedule from the first dates published.  v1.3 was only two weeks later that the date originally published over a year earlier.  
  2. v1.4 is the only release that was materially later than the first published road map.  That is based on the original estimate made in the summer of 2013!  
  3. The reason v1.3 was two weeks late is that we applied engineering resources to perform preliminary research for v1.4 in the area of LAN remote data compression and the Waveform API/FreeDV during the v1.3 release cycle.  
  4. This past October we announced our intent to do a v1.5 release that focuses on noise/interference mitigation enhancements along with system performance enhancements. 
  5. As we went into full development of v1.4, we decided that we should perform end to end system performance tuning that we had originally planned to do in v1.5.  As Steve reported a few days ago, this is a real time, multiprocessor client/server system with over 40 parallel threads.  We performed significant surgery under the cover that has radically increased end to end system performance as well as decreasing the PC power required for the client.  When you do that kind of surgery, it requires significant stability testing and debug cycles.  This cannot be rushed.  
  6. v1.4 is running now on low end PCs that completely choke on v1.3.8.  My i7 went from 70% loading on 8 cores with v1.3.8 to under 15% loading on only 4 cores with the v1.4 test release.  That is running with 8 panadapters, 8 slices, and 8 DAX streams.  Network loading with 8 slices running remote LAN without DAX is running only ~8 Mbps.
  7. We have been unwilling to release v1.4 until we are satisfied with its stability and reliability.  I stand by that decision unequivocally.  
  8. The current test release of v1.4 is now very stable but I will not give a date for release.  On the day we release we will put out a public announcement through the Flex Insider.
  9. The engineering team has now moved to planning and design for the next point release.
  10. We are planning to move to shorter release cycles beginning with the next release.  That means more frequent but smaller releases (a.k.a. Agile).  It also means that there are likely to be more point releases than in the past.
James, I will not answer the specific internal business questions you posed because I am unwilling to give that information to my competitors.  However, I will tell you that the gross margin generated from the radio you purchased only paid for a very small fraction of the engineering team overhead within the specific month you purchased the radio.  At this point adding resources will not speed the process just as 9 women can't have a baby in one month.

This will be the last post I make on this subject until v1.4 ships.  ;>)

73,
Gerald  
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James Watts

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Gerald , I thank you very much for taking the time to address my concerns and for the development update.

As I stated above, I'm not a troll and I'm not here to bash FRS, I want you to succeed and prosper. As my buying history indicates, I am a fan of Flex Radio. I just feel the lack of communication with your customers leads to misinformation. Please don't take my questions the wrong way, I just wanted to know if the development team was understaffed and this was the root cause of features being slowly implemented and release delays.

Thank you again for your reply.

James, W8GN
(Edited)
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Dan -- KC4GO

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Gerald and Team:
Don't forget the 80/20 rule of business.
Once 1.4 is released the rule will still be in place.
Dan --- KC4GO 
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DrTeeth

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Gerald,
Many thanks for the additional information. Sorry for the occasions when my impatience got the better of me.
With kindest regards
Guy
(Edited)
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k0eoo

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Guy, I have moments like that too.... I've had to bite my tongue hard a couple of times and, like you, still love the radio....
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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Gerald, thanks for the additional information. It clears up quite a lot.
73, Alex DH2ID
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Reg

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Gerald:

I love my 6700 with 1.3.8.  I am sure that I will love it even more when we get 1.4.  Thank you.

Reg

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Robbie - KI4TTZ

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#6 is very impressive. Can't wait to see it!

-Robbie
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Robbie - KI4TTZ

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#6 is very impressive. Can't wait to see it!

-Robbie
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EA4GLI - 8P9EH - Salvador

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Thanks for the information.
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Jay / NO5J

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I own those three models myself. You wrote "owned". Did some one steal some of them? Were they lost in a catastrophe? Did you give them to a deserving new ham? I'm confused, You wrote you "owned" them. Were you really just renting them? You still own one. How are the studies going. It sounds like you want the answers. Theres a test coming up. We'll review the answers, after the test. And no, cheating will still not be allowed.  
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James Watts

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Jay, I'm really not qualified to teach you English, but I'll give it a try. I owned, (meaning I at one point did own but no longer own) the SDR1000 and the Flex 5000a. Those have gone on to new homes. I still own (meaning I still have in my possession) a brand new Flex 6500.

Whew, I'm exhausted, but Jay if you still need a dictionary, I'll do my best to purchase one and send to you. Are you good on QRZ?

James, W8GN
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Jay / NO5J

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Oh Sorry James, After rereading your initial post, I see that you specifically asked that someone from FRS answer. K5SDR answered. and I replied, with humor I thought. You fail to see the humor, OK I get it. You wanted answers from Flex "only", no noise from the public. You wanted everyone to see your question, Done. You wanted everyone to see the answer. Done. You didn't want to privately achieve the same result. which an email or phone call to the toll free line might have provided. So you don't currently own a dictionary? Well when your done reading it, I'm good on QRZ.

Drop it off yourself, If you like. Save yourself the shipping and handling charges, Just email me with your phone number, before you pull up,  when you get close, So I can call you back, when I get the dogs in. We could even sit down over a cup of coffee or something and discuss meanings, the dogs are really nothing to worry about. Just trust me on that, like I do them. I've got a dictionary already, and both own, and owned are in it. I'm exhausted too, But, no need to end a civil public discussion. Or did you want to come over so we can discuss meanings, in private?

The game is Poker. You dealt the cards this round.The secret is knowing when to bluff, and when your getting bluffed, if you get it right. You win!. So place your bet,
raise the bet. or call. It's just a game. Your turn sir. Win, loose, or draw.

This is my Poker face.

                

Look me in the eye, look at your cards, and bet!


73, Jay - NO5J  
(Edited)
Photo of KM6CQ - Dan

KM6CQ - Dan

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You guys forgot to ask Gerald if he has an email server setup
inside his house? :)

73,   Dan  KM6CQ
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Steve N4LQ

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Keep in mind that the software goals may turn out to be impossible with the current hardware. 
After all, how could FRS have known if it had never been done before? 
Photo of K2CB Eric Dobrowansky

K2CB Eric Dobrowansky

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Now wouldn't that be a real quagmire!
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Bill -VA3WTB

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After reading Steve's article on how the 6000 started, I don't think that would be a problem for many years...
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Steve N4LQ

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Where am I wrong?...Example: If FRS knew for certain that "Auto Notch" would work without distortion and remote WAN would function perfectly with the current hardware then wouldn't these features already exist? It takes a huge amount of confidence to sell hardware then develop it later don't you think? 
Photo of WA6FXT Mike

WA6FXT Mike

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Steve, NOT when it is "Software Defined"!

Mike
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Lee

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I like my 6500, it's a cool radio.

I do seriously question whether Flex has the resource to deliver the things we need/promised in a generally good timeframe. If I am correct it has been out going on 3 years?

Personally I expected 1.5 to be there when I bought the 6500 at Dayton last year. And I thought it already had Flex 5000 features +. I guess I did not do my homework on that. A $4500+ radio should already have excellent DSP features day one (maybe some on-going improvements). I got the Flex and sold my TT Orion II ( a very good TOTL radio) for several reasons...I like SDR, Panafall, expected a superior RX due to architecture, O II was getting old, etc. The RX is not really better (It would help if the NR, ANL, NB were working excellent).

Are we even on schedule for WAN REMOTE in 2015 anymore? As promised at Dayton 2014 and in the plan.

This is certainly a different approach...if you bought a $7500 7700 you would expect it to have all the features (Has a great WAN Remote) and they do.....I guess I really did expect they had the resources to get this all done pretty fast. I did know it was not all done when I bought it. And that's OK.

Being a retired IT Pro with 40 years at IBM...(I was involved in hardware, firmware, operating systems and applications) I was able to see that the architecture was excellent and that is one big reason I drank the cool aid. I still think it is.

I think Flex is doing a great job in communicating to us....They are, I'm sure doing all they can with the resources they have, Are the resources enough to accomplish the goals in a timely manner....that's yet to be seen. This is hard, complex work.

I hope so as I love the radio in general. Maybe things will really speed up. Maybe they will surprise us in the near future?

It's a good basic radio the way it is now (once 1.5 stuff happens) but I can see why some, including me, are disappointed in the progress.  

For me...1.5 will be the deciding version...I don't really need remote, FM converters...I want the VERY BEST HF rig to be had for weak signal DX, rag chew etc in todays noisy crowded bands.

My neighborhood is certainly not getting any RF quieter, and 40 at night is crowded with close in stations. We will be in low sunspot soon and the low bands will be even more crowded.

Thanks Gerald for keeping us informed. Flex in my opinion is a quality operation or I would not have bought the radio.

A big concern is when people on the fence as to getting a Flex here of the slow progress (Yes, I know you guys at Flex don't think it is slow, but some of us sure do)

Lee, KC9CDT


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James Kennedy-WU5E

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very interesting Gerald
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Andrew O'Brien

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All in this thread are correct, sort of.  A customer has every right to complain and hope the vendor is an attentive customer oriented company. e.g., when I expressed frustration to Apple that two Ipods in a row failed just AFTER the warranty expired.  Apple listened and offered me a $350 Ipod Touch for $75!  I did not feel they were obliged to do this, but I was a very happy person when they did. There was no time where I felt I had a right to have Apple detail their internal quality control methods or their development planning. 
Andy K3UK
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k0eoo

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Come on guys, remember, the watched pot never.......
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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I am closing this thread since it has been answered and there are other threads with the same subject that have been thoroughly commented on.  Thanks for the additional constructive comments that were provided.

This conversation is no longer open for comments or replies.