The Robbox xDrill was advertised as “The Drill Reimagined.” It was to be a smart cordless drill of the future, with an innovative design to instantly make all types of traditional drills and drivers obsolete.
I posted about the xDrill one year ago, in July 2021, before its Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign went on to become successfully funded.
I had serious doubts about the drill and how it was marketed, but it did look to be an interesting design that piggybacked a great deal of measuring and layout technology onto an otherwise ordinary-looking cordless drill.
The xDrill’s February 2021 shipping ETA came and went, but the company has not yet been able to start shipping out the drills to backers. They have published a couple of updates since then:
March 2021 Updates
- First Local Beta Testers for Feedback — July 2021
- xDrill Revision Complete — July 2021
- Manufacturing — August 2021
- Final Confirmation of Order/Shipping Addresses — August 2021
- Shipping for North America — September – October 2021
- Shipping for Europe/Rest of World — September – October 2021
- Retail Launch — November 2021
Because Robbox missed their original shipping target, they promised the following to their backers:
We’re including an extra FREE Robbox 21V Battery for every order
A WAY better product (video of production model will be posted soon).
Free package of Robbox Swag (Includes shirt, hat, and more!)
A WAY better product? I have not seen what this entails, and the company has not published any updated videos that I could find.
They didn’t go into many details, aside from:
our team had to make some internal design changes in order to improve the durability of the xDrill™ and add a layer of protection to the internal electronics of the tool.
July 2021 Updates
Following are some of the highlights from the xDrill’s Kickstarter updates:
As we mentioned before, there were several aspects of the xDrill that our team wanted to address before moving into the manufacturing stage of the project. In the next coming weeks, our team will be working to finalize the xDrill revisions that are required to ensure the xDrill is as efficient, durable, and intuitive as possible.
I wasn’t sure what this is referencing – is this related to the durability refinements they were making?
our team finalized the platform and have incorporated wireless updates into the xDrill.
this will allow the xDrill to be consistently updated by the user through our iOS and Android app to ensure the software and tech within the xDrill itself is always running as effectively as possible. This will also allow us to introduce some cool new features down the road
The xDrill was shown to have Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity. Firmware updates are normal for connected products, but this is usually a core feature, and not something that should be first completed months after a product was supposed to ship.
As if shipping delays weren’t enough, most recently, there has been massive shortages in semi-conductor chips which has caused additional delays in receiving the required parts to move forward in a timely manner.
I’ve been hearing about chip and component shortages affecting all kinds of products. I’d give them a pass on this one.
The Overall State of Things
I have not been following the project or company’s progress, but it seems that some of the xDrill’s backers are understandably angry at the lack of communications, with a couple requesting and even demanding refunds.
Robbox Tools has not answered some of their commentors’ questions in a while.
Last October (2020), the company responded to some backers, assuring them that the drills would start shipping out in March 2021. At that time, the March 2021 ETA was only 5 months out, and was only 1 month beyond original estimates.
When March came, a September-October 2021 ETA was given.
The ETA was not mentioned or changed in the company’s July 2021 update.
With discussion of semiconductor shortages, shipping delays, and that Robbox Tools is still “waiting a response from their suppliers for the lead times” of “the parts necessary for the first batch of xDrills,” it sounds like they’re not ready to make any new promises.
Good luck to anyone who backed this project.