Last week, I reported some of the consequences of LeEco’s overreach in their ongoing bid to open the US market to their tech products (Previous story). And, sadly, the story continues to look worse for the China-based smartphone and electronics firm.
The latest bad news involves their EcoPass video streaming service. EcoPass was announced in last October’s big splash event, along with the Le Pro 3 and Le S3 smartphones, the LeEco Android TVs, the LeEco connected Super Bike and the LeSee Pro, the self-driving, electric concept car. EcoPass was supposed to compete with services like Netflix and others in the very competitive streaming market. The idea was to offer EcoPass members (consumers who bought their smartphones and TVs), three to twelve months of complimentary streaming, then continue the subscription service on a monthly plan with pricing to be revealed this Spring. Cloud storage, priority customer service and extended warranties were also to be included.
But, last Friday (4/14), a spokesman for LeEco confirmed that EcoPass was done, sending an official statement to Variety:
“We have discontinued the EcoPass Beta program as of April 1. We will be replacing EcoPass with 3-months of DirecTV NOW with every purchase of a LeEco ecophone or ecotv. We believe this provides greater value to our customers since it has over 60 channels that include the latest movies and shows.”
Adding that customers that had signed up for EcoPass would still be able to redeem their premium video content credits and receive a lifetime 10 GB of cloud storage offer. We’ll see how that goes.
The membership model used by LeEco has worked for them in China, but has fallen completely flat in the American market. Due in a great degree to their unrealistic expectations and extreme overspending, I’m sure. By banking on the smartphones, the Android TVs, the subscription service, the connected bike and the self-driving car all being accepted in the US at once, they have become the model of trying too much too soon.
As I stated last week, I certainly hope LeEco can turn things around in the US, but to say it doesn’t look hopeful would be a great understatement at this point.
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Source: Android Authority