OnePlus, who will launch their One handset in days, recently ran a contest to win one of their smartphones. Via their website, those who posted at a certain interval (the 5,001st post is in question, here) would win a handset. The winner’s excitement quickly turned to anguish as he was stripped of his device.
It seems the issue was with post numbering. The 5,001st post was set to win, and did — except it wasn’t the 5,001st post at all, according to OnePlus. Somehow, the winning post was re-assigned to be 5,078, meaning no handset. As expected, the winner was a bit miffed at having his mantle taken from him.
Via their blog, OnePlus had the following explanation. After plainly saying “we messed up”, the company gave a brief rundown of what led up to the mess:
Our forum was not designed for so many posts to be posted at once. Although the database stored the correct values, some posts numbers showed up as duplicates. When these duplicates were later fixed, they changed the order of all subsequent posts.
People who originally thought they won a OnePlus One ended up with nothing, and understandably got upset. We came up with solutions on how to make things fair, but instead of dealing with the issue immediately, we said we would do it after launch. For such a highly anticipated product, this was a bad call. It left users, our users, with extreme anxiousness over whether or not they’d receive the OnePlus One.
OnePlus offers no excuses, other than to properly note they’re a startup with some growing pains. Leading up to the launch of their first (potentially game changing) device, hiccups will occur. They’ve done what they can to make it right, going above and beyond what they had to in offering additional handsets to others in similar circumstances. For such an unfortunate blunder early on in their hsitory, OnePlus handled it admirably. That’s a good indication they’re on the right path.