Jolla is in the news again, and they are telling us that the first batch of the Jolla smartphones was fully booked. What this means exactly is hard to decode, as we unfortunately do not have the exact numbers rather than the fact that the orders came from over 136 countries. At the very least it means that there has been enough interest to continue production.
UPDATE: We now know for sure that a Jolla spokesperson said that the size of the production batch for a mobile device vendor of this size is typically 50,000 units. This however does not theoretically mean that they received 50 000 pre-orders, just that they had to actually place an order with the factories for at least 50 000 units.
This is definitely great news for the Finland-based smartphone company. Tomi Pienimäki, the current CEO of Jolla commented: "We are delighted to see this great worldwide interest towards our very first device. When you see someone wearing an ‘I am the First One’ T-shirt, you see a proud future owner of Jolla.”
The phone was launched during the #JollaLoveDay, when we had the chance to take a close look at the phone itself and also play around with Sailfish OS. We liked what we saw, except some very minor details such as the fact that the edge of the phone was a little bit too sharp, which is hopefully going to be taken care of for the final production.
To secure the first pre-order batch, Jolla used crowdfunding. This seems to be a trend and a powerful weapon that companies are trying to use in order to set a dent in the smartphone market. Another company to attempt this is Ubuntu with Ubuntu Edge, who have broken pretty much every crowdfunding record in history, but are still about $20 million short of their $32 million funding goal, with the campaign ending in less than 21 hours.
Speaking of Ubuntu, their Indiegogo campaign received backing for around 5 000 devices. Jolla, however, ran the campaign on their own site using the technology by the local equity crowdfunding company - Invesdor. So it would be interesting to know how many phones they were able to get pre-orders for in comparison to Ubuntu.
We have reached out to Jolla for comments, and if we hear more, we will let you know. The first phones that come off the production line are still scheduled to be shipped at the end of 2013 starting with the DNA mobile phone operator in Finland. DNA will be the very first operator in the world to offer Jolla phones.
For those of you that have missed the buzz, the company is saying that they are doing their best to start a second pre-order campaign later in Autumn.
You can also see our hands-on review of the phone below: