After the big push at Christmas, normality has returned to our factory in January. We continue to deliver Heatles regularly to customers all over Europe. As always, we focus on quality and productivity and are constantly looking for ways to improve our processes and increase our output.
We continue to receive photos from customers who have received their Heatle and their positive feedback, which we share on Instagram and our website. We are always happy to hear about new accessory ideas and innovations and have already selected some good ones to push further - see below. Our main focus is on production with the aim of delivering all pre-orders by early summer.
Even though we continue to accept further pre-orders, the allocation system will be followed, meaning all dispatches will be shipped in chronological order, according to order date. We maintain that there will be no que jumping or special priorities given. But since the production is now going through in one go, the gaps between deliveries are not as long as between orders.
Heatle production, warehouse
To help us meet demand faster, we've expanded our great team - here you can see the early shift of the production department.
Summary of Christmas and year-end deliveries
Since we delivered Heatles by Christmas Eve - and even handed over a number of units in person in Berlin on 24 December - we have not managed to put a December update online and have communicated our progress by email. As many of you are still unable to receive our emails reliably, we would like to add this information herewith.
The Heatle factory in the heart of Berlin is bustling with activity as we produce and ship Heatles in ever increasing quantities. We continue to receive positive feedback from customers all over Europe, some of whom have come in person to pick up their Heatle, like Daniela and Pablo in the pictures below, or to visit our production and test a Heatle live, like Detlef and his wife.
We have been keeping DHL busy with several pick-ups a day. It is satisfying to see how many Heatles leave us in the DHL truck and make their way to our customers.
And when DHL was overwhelmed in view of the holidays, we took it upon ourselves to load rental vehicles and drive the parcels to the DHL depot.
Continuation of production in January 2023
We resumed production on 2 January and continued to build and deliver Heatles with increasing speed and efficiency.
Photo above: the glass is applied. This process was very time-consuming for the first batch of Heatles, but fortunately the glass is already applied by the manufacturer for the next batches, which saves us valuable time and increases our productivity.
Photo above: Black and white heatles after a production test.
Our production runs in multiple shifts and is the only office in the entire building that also works very late. We have hired more staff for production, including some talented Ukrainian staff that the local media wanted to do a report on.
If you want to know more about this topic, you can listen to this RBB-Inforadio report from January:
Also in January, RBB television from Berlin visited us and was interested in our start-up story. You can see this report from RBB Studio 3 from the beginning of February here:
Regular dispatch of consignments
We are still dependent on our main suppliers, for example for the motherboard. This did not happen as quickly as we had expected. We have been working to eliminate the delays and speed up production by making small improvements to the design to make the manufacturing process easier.
There were some delays caused by two union strikes on the part of DHL, which led to a jam of Heatles in our outgoing goods department. Fortunately, work resumed and DHL picked up all the parcels.
We know that the logistics industry, and especially courier service, is an extremely demanding job that is not well paid. We try to support our DHL drivers in sorting the parcels every day.
Product and function development
The Heatle app is progressing well and we hope to launch it soon. We have also tested some of the requested accessories, such as the Moka pot (with temperature control for the perfect coffee).
The moka pot is a traditional coffee maker that stands on the cooker and brews coffee by forcing boiling water, which is under steam pressure, through ground coffee. It is named after the Yemeni city of Mocha and was invented in 1933 by Italian engineer Alfonso Bialetti. It quickly became a classic of Italian culture. Although the moka pot is considered one of the best ways to make perfect coffee, the traditional design has the disadvantage of heating the pot for too long, which causes excessive pressure in the base and burns the coffee, leaving a bitter taste.
Our new design solves the problem by giving the Heatle base temperature feedback that controls the power level and shut-off point, so you get the perfect coffee every time.
This is another good idea from the community. We were asked if it would be possible to build a disc with elevations or domes that would allow better liquid and heat flow during heating and reduce the risk of burning thicker liquids like milk.
So we realised the idea - a stainless steel disc with 3 feet. The accessory is easy to attach to the existing discs (so it's like an extension). It is easy to clean in the dishwasher and we have noticed that the noise caused by some cups, especially those made of glass, has decreased significantly. In the photo you can also see well that the air can escape better and thus vibrations are reduced.
Cold tea or coffee? Not with us! Normally, the Heatle stops when it reaches the set temperature. We have had a few requests for some functions. Our software team has developed the keep warm function, which allows you to keep the temperature of the liquid at a certain level for a certain time ("keep warm"). This can be useful for some people to prepare food or drinks. This function will be available via a software update in the app as soon as it is operational.
A timer function was also requested. This is a simple mode where the Heatle can heat for a certain time without worrying about temperature measurement - hence a photo where it works without a wand. This functionality is necessary for future accessories (e.g. eggs or coffee pots), but can also be used regularly for drinks. This feature will be available via a software update in the app once it is up and running.
Once again, we thank you for your support and patience. We have been working diligently under difficult conditions and we are making great progress every day.