When we came across the Solarlol solar panel Kickstarter campaign, we knew it was one we wanted to write about. However, we were unable to get the article to the finishing line in time.
While we try to keep up with all the dodgy crowdfunding campaigns out there, this is a project that we are doing in our free time to help buyers make informed decisions before backing campaigns that are have a high chance of being scams.
We weren’t able to write an article on it, but now that it is past their estimated delivery and things are looking bad, we are putting out previous research out here.
Are we surprised that it is starting to look like a scam? Not at all.
There is one way you can always be sure that you are getting secure, reliable, and affordable energy. And it’s Solarlol.
Featuring innovative solar energy technology. It converts the sunlight to usable electricity wherever there is sunshine. This makes it the perfect charger for anyone with today’s on the go lifestyle. What’s more, the parallel solution makes its 60W original output possible up to 360W, combines with energy storage to provide a complete energy solution for your family.
Ghosting after funding
The last update by Solarlol was in December 2022 after they were fully funded. Since then, they have disappeared.
It is rather damning that they made it sound all rosy in their last update, with the only problem being them not receiving money from some backers.
There were problems and they chose to mention it only in a comment. This is a trick scammers like to use. If you’re not aware, posting an update sends an email to every backer in the campaign. Posting a comment doesn’t.
So you can see why they chose to post the bad news in a comment. They update people who are complaining in the comments in an attempt to appease them, without alerting the other unaware backers of the problem.
There is no information about the company behind Solarlol, though they call themselves Solarlol Tech. There are no trademarks registered for the Solarlol brand, though we weren’t expecing them to register such a brand name.
Solarlol almost feels like a name chosen to mock the users.
The video was filmed in Shenzhen, where we suspect the creators to be based. The campaign was launched in Hong Kong, most likely through a shell company or subsidiary.
The only person linked to the campaign is the campaign creator LingWei Zhou.
The team showcase has the traits of a typical scam.
- Fake profile images, or in this case photos with cartoon filters.
- Generic first names intead of full names
Is it worth it?
The Solarlol sold for around USD 128 on Kickstarter, a price that they claim is at a 46% discount from retail price. That would make the retail price around USD 237.
There are many portable, foldable solar panels out there in the market ranging from USD 40 to USD 230 for power of 25W to 160W.
Solarlol solar panel is rated at 60W with a self-touted parallel solution that it claims can deliver 360W of output. The claim seems rather ridiculous if you ask us.
We looked at a reputable brand BLUETTI for comparison. A similar size BLUETTI PV200 panel delivers 200W of output and retails at USD 499. BLUETTI’s PV350 delivers 350W of output at a much larger size and retails at USD 849.
If the Solarlol solar panel could truly deliver that much output with a smaller panel, then shouldn’t they be charging more? Delivering the power more than a USD 849 panel at a size of a USD 499 panel, while only charging USD 128 on Kickstarter and USD 237 in retail. Our scam senses are tingling!
What are the alternatives?
If you are looking for something close to Solarlol’s output, your best best is the BLUETTI’s PV350 for USD 849.
If you’re looking for something close to Solarlol’s price, the LVYUAN’s 120W panel is going for USD 139.
If you’re looking for something close to Solarlol’s supposed retail price, the ROCKPALS has a 120W panel selling for USD 249.
The bottom line is, you get what you pay for. The portable solar panels market is mature and you won’t see too much fluctuations in pricing.
We’ve pretty much covered the red flags. Here’s a recap:
- No information about the company Solarlol.
- No brand registered under Solarlol.
- Pricing is too good to be true.
- Ghosting since they were successfully funded.
- No news at all in February even though they promised to delivery in February.
Is it a scam?
Unfortunately, it is looking more like a scam by the day. The estimated delivery is February and we’re nearing the end of February. The creators are not even interested to update backers of any problems with production or shipping.
No updates with photos of the production or finished products. No update at all, actually.
In conclusion, the Solarlol solar panel Kickstarter campaign appears to be a scam. The red flags are major ones and the creators seem to have ghosted for good.
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