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DJI Management
1286 27 2016-3-16
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Richard in Bois
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I have worked for a couple of companies that have failed because of the very issues we see at DJI at this time.  Management is driven by the Marketing department rather than the technical side of the house.  It is amazing that the products being produced and sold are totally technical but the Marketing guys seem to be in the driver’s seat.

Either the management of software development is totally incompetent or his superiors are.  In either case, someone needs to be fired.

First, you never release product until software development signs off on current release version.  Second, you never release software until it is fully tested.  Third, you never release software without accurate release notes being published at the SAME time or in advance.  Not to mention instructions on how to implement software releases especially when they are as convoluted as the current update procedures for the new Phantom 4.

I would hate to see DJI fail as a business but they surely will if the management of this company does not get its act together.


Added later...
I feel sorry for the people that support us on these forums.  At times it would appear that DJI ties their hands behind their back and leaves them in the dark as much as we are.  I for one really appreciate the level of support they give use especially given the number of questions and issues.

2016-3-16
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quikdom
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If you waited for the technical team to say they are 100% sure there are no bugs and no flaws a product like this would never get released.
2016-3-16
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Richard in Bois
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quikdom Posted at 2016-3-16 23:31
If you waited for the technical team to say they are 100% sure there are no bugs and no flaws a prod ...

That might be true.  The number of bugs released at this time seems to be more than acceptable.  I think they could do a better job and at least document what is released.
2016-3-16
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stephen.h.watso
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quikdom Posted at 2016-3-16 08:31
If you waited for the technical team to say they are 100% sure there are no bugs and no flaws a prod ...


Which is why nobody ever does.  What is done is to *prioritize* bugs, feature enhancements, etc., and ensure that *major* bugs are fixed, minor ones are acceptable, etc., prior to release.

It seems DJI has either some really crappy software/firmware developers, or a crappy V&V program, or both.  Their quality control appears to be atrocious.  The only explanation for this sort of poor performance is that they *just don't care*, probably because they're selling enough that *do* work or that people just tolerate the parts that don't work that they figure "WTF?  So what if we have to repair X number of drones a day...we're getting rich anyway!"

GoPro was (and may still be) the same way...the internet was *littered* with complaints about their shoddy QC...one camera would work fine, the next would continually fail in new and novel ways.  Same sort of deal...get an RMA, send it in, wait a few weeks, hope the new one they send is better, repeat.  But hey...the owners were getting rich, so what did they care?

Wouldn't surprise me if it isn't the same people running this company, given its lack of quality.
2016-3-16
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Mike_fnq
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quikdom Posted at 2016-3-17 01:31
If you waited for the technical team to say they are 100% sure there are no bugs and no flaws a prod ...

I can't see where the OP said "bug free" but I do agree that it's not feasible to do (I think the OP would too)

But the symptoms with this release  do show company damaging traits,
Having software updates within 24hrs of release reeks of "not ready for market".

I also agree with the OP in that marketing seem to be writing cheques that technical can't cash. The latest blurb includes a short quote from Time "It's almost impossible to crash" . Which I assume is out of context because Time would have been referring to use of the obstacle avoidance system, not in general as implied the way the quote was used. This has been the case for most of the Phantom Range ( P3 "always comes home and Never loses it's way") and people wonder why some get upset when it doesn't live up to the hype.

I hope they get their sh#t together, because they are good products (generally) just poorly documented and supported.
2016-3-16
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R&L Aerial
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Is that you Paul Kerry?
2016-3-16
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Orange5ive
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One of the reasons companies often release software patches just after the product is released is they will get to a point of advanced Beta and the SW engineers will say 4 more weeks of work to finalise. Instead of waiting 4 weeks to start production they start producing it with initial SW on then patch it. How many times does apple tweek the software. They are always working on ways to make it better. And it's impossible to test every scenario in the lab so it's inevitable that someone will do something that exposes a bug.
2016-3-16
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mixmaven
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Don't agree, you apparently haven't been around DJI long enough.

Marketing thinks DJI is driven by engineering, engineering thinks DJI is driven by marketing and really accounting rules them all.   This debate has been going on for years.  
2016-3-16
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Geebax
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mixmaven Posted at 2016-3-17 10:28
Don't agree, you apparently haven't been around DJI long enough.

Marketing thinks DJI is driven by ...

At least they get their products out there, there are a whole swag of companies promising new drones and so far none of them have delivered, or worse still, bit the dust. Take 3DR for example.

2016-3-16
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DJI-Ken
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I can say one thing, it's that DJI will not be going out of business. They will only grow and become bigger and bigger.
With the Phantom 4 as their flagship new drone, that alone will keep DJI on top. And the projects in the pipeline will continue to amaze everyone.
2016-3-16
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DJI-Ken
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That was funny
2016-3-16
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DJI-Ken
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Geebax Posted at 2016-3-17 08:33
At least they get their products out there, there are a whole swag of companies promising new dron ...

DJI isn't going anywhere, they are making friends everywhere.
Read this article.
http://www.movidius.com/news/mov ... my-to-dji-phantom-4
2016-3-16
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Geebax
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DJI-Ken Posted at 2016-3-17 11:42
DJI isn't going anywhere, they are making friends everywhere.
Read this article.
http://www.movidi ...

Yeah, you don't have to convince me
2016-3-16
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Richard in Bois
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Still...  Releasing updates to applications, firmware, and hardware without adequate documentation is really poor business and causes support people like DJI-Ken a lot of extra work when they could be addressing real issues.
2016-3-17
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microcyb
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This is a tough topic.   The DJI line has been a very good product and many users have had little issues with their device,.  On the flip side when users do have an issues, it tends to be more focused on hardware or user related problems.
Biggest problem, is the push for mass production due to the demand of the products seems to have come at a cost of quality control when a device leaves the manufacturing facility to the distribution ware house.

The software does have some good check features, but just like anything, that can only go so far.  Solution: Hardware quality assurance staff/test procedures should be increased.  This would reduce the  the hardware related problems and increase customer satisfaction.

Granted any upper management or executive will never see or read this, so sadly till they get this idea in their minds, DJI will continue to have bad devices being sent out to the customers.

2016-3-17
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spiderbot.sb
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Geebax Posted at 2016-3-16 19:33
At least they get their products out there, there are a whole swag of companies promising new dron ...

I don't know this for a fact but is it possible the other companies are waiting to get things right before release?  Do you think they may be reading this forum?

And there are alternate, even less expensive products that are similar in feature set available now on the market, if you look.  Google is your friend.
2016-3-17
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daviskw2004
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Just from a financial perspective I don’t understand why most technical companies don’t make available for purchase a hard copy comprehensive operators manual. I would purchase such a manual that covers the Go app as well as the aircraft and its operation. DJI is not alone in not taking advantage of this opportunity for profit.

Not only could they make money but it could very well reduce the cost of tech support and this very forum.

Butch
2016-3-17
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Geebax
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daviskw2004 Posted at 2016-3-18 02:43
Just from a financial perspective I don’t understand why most technical companies don’t make avail ...

I would imagine the problem would be that such a manual would be out of date before it even got printed, such is the tendency to release new updates so quickly. The cost of printing manuals is not insignificant, and I have a number of manuals on my shelf that I have not even bothered to open, I just use on-line help.
2016-3-17
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DJI-Dave
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Geebax Posted at 2016-3-17 15:29
I would imagine the problem would be that such a manual would be out of date before it even got pr ...

Yes I would agree. The manual would get outdated very quickly. I think online manual is better.


Dave
2016-3-17
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labroides
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spiderbot.sb Posted at 2016-3-18 02:24
I don't know this for a fact but is it possible the other companies are waiting to get things righ ...

"I don't know this for a fact but is it possible the other companies are  waiting to get things right before release?"

SOme of them are waiting a long time then ... look  at Autel (formerly Maxaero).  They launched their X-star at CES 2015 saying it would be out by April 2015 ... and a few other months in 2015.  Then they relaunched it at CES 2016 with a March 2016 release that's already slipped to April.

Look  at Prodrone that was to be available November 2015, now saying April.
Look at Plexidrone,  CyPhy and others that probably wan't ever deliver a product despite having taken $$ for kickstart campaigns. etc etc.
  
"And there are alternate, even less expensive products that are similar  in feature set available now on the market, if you look.  Google is your  friend."
There are alternative and less expensive drones ... but none have a similar feature set.
None of the competitors have anything to compare to Lightbridge so none of the competitors have anything like the range of a P3 or 4 and some also only fly at 22 mph.

2016-3-17
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daviskw2004
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DJI-Dave Posted at 2016-3-18 06:49
Yes I would agree. I manual would get outdated very quickly. I think online manual is better.

I would be satisfied with an online manual... IF... it were complete and comprehensive...The existing manuals have left some settings out and give few examples and explanations that would make operation easier and safer.

You folks here have produced some videos that do a good job explaining much that is NOT included in the manuals... or not explained properly. I appreciate your efforts but wish the manual would explain operations as well as you do.

I don't anticipate a huge change in operation for the Phantom 3's now that the 4's are out so maybe now would be a good time to produce a hard-copy manual.

Butch
2016-3-17
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DJI-Dave
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daviskw2004 Posted at 2016-3-17 17:11
I would be satisfied with an online manual... IF... it were complete and comprehensive...The exist ...

Good points.


Dave
2016-3-18
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Richard in Bois
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DJI-Dave Posted at 2016-3-17 15:49
Yes I would agree. The manual would get outdated very quickly. I think online manual is better.

These days with so many changes, an online manual is totally acceptable.  Problem is, it must be kept up to date.  As soon as it gets stale, you can no longer trust the information.  Currently it is so stale it is turning blue.  
2016-3-18
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vu.q.le
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Tip: the author has been banned or deleted automatically shield
2016-3-18
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quikdom
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No, I used to be a database developer :-)
2016-3-19
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spiderbot.sb
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labroides@yahoo Posted at 2016-3-17 18:20
"I don't know this for a fact but is it possible the other companies are  waiting to get things ri ...

Why do you need 'maximum range' if you're required to keep your UAV in LOS at all times?  And speed?  Are you a race fan?  Oh, action shots?  I think true professionals would actually buy something besides a P4, which is very well described as a hobby UAV.

An alternate that leaps to mind is the Yuneek.  A friend owns one of those and took some breathtaking video that I would match with anything I've seen from Phantom users.  Also, I saw a video for a new drone here on this forum but I can't remember the name.  It has collision avoidance that appears superior to the P4.  Granted, it is not yet available.  They must be making sure it's right before releasing, eh?

Lastly, as for feature set, DJI could have left off the geofencing...

Happy flying.
2016-3-22
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Kneepuck
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There is one company still existing that was probably the role model for all the tech companies that came along after.  That company,  to this very day uses the same business model.  User manuals?  Go pound sand,  is their motto.  If you want a manual write your own.  Product support?  Ha ha,  see the comments another poster said about Apple.    The company I am talking about is,  wait for it,  Microsoft.  And they are still in business.  As long as the majority of consumers will just let things go along,  then things will just go along.  No change.

We are our own worst enemies.


2016-3-23
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Richard in Bois
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Kneepuck Posted at 2016-3-23 18:24
There is one company still existing that was probably the role model for all the tech companies that ...

You are right about MS and documentation. Can you imagine the documentation manual size for Windows or other complex operating systems.  They are available on line you know.
I use Adobe PP and they used to create a printed manual and now it is all online. I just wish DJI would keep an online manual up to date..  Not too much to ask for a company this size.
2016-3-26
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