Teracube Thrive

The Tercube website and marketing emails are now mentioning the Teracube Thrive (“You know, for kids!” :rofl:), and have posted a link to their now-active Indiegogo campaign. As a “discerning” consumer of Teracube products, and a parent a of near-to-phone-age kid, this interests me more than a little. It would be nice to put electric boundaries in place without subjecting my child to the Eye of Google. That said, I have questions:

  • The first question on the Indiegogo engagement page is basically “what does the $9/month subscription get me” There is a response, but the response doesn’t answer that question. Does Teracube even know this yet? I’m OK if the answer is “no, we don’t know yet”, but if that’s the case, they should figure it out soon, because I think they will probably lose a lot of customers if they don’t offer a “phone only” option. I personally would be OK with a subscription if it offers additional features I will use.

  • Service aside, what’s under the hood in the way of hardware? The Indiegogo page is essentially silent on this, which I find a bit unusual. Is it basically a Teracube 2e with a custom OS (Thrive OS)?

  • Is “Thrive OS” hardware specific? Is it FOSS? Could we give it a test drive or help with development by installing it on an old phone?

Great idea, by the way!

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Hi @ecs - thanks for checking out thrive and love your feedback as well.

The subscription is meant to fund our Thrive software development as well as the premium care warranty for life. So basically the customers will keep paying $9 till they need the phone to use the Thrive monitoring as well as to keep the phone functional.

Yes - Thrive is Teracube 2e hardware running Thrive OS (modified Android).

We are not targeting to have Thrive OS as FOSS or available as a separate build for other phones. However I love your idea - we could release it as a build for Teracube 2e users to try out and help with the development. Making note of this - stay tuned!

Thanks. While we are on it - would love to hear what all you think you like and what you think can be skipped? Do you think Thrive differentiates enough from other free apps like Google Family Link?

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Hi Sharad,

Love the idea and I am interested but just being getting my head around the subsciption & warranty.
I live outside the free shipping regions (NZ) so I realise shipping is an extra cost on warranty replacements and I assume also additional to the $49 accidental repair cost?

Given shipping is ($40 one-way) then a warranty replacment could cost me $80 and an accidental repair $129 which is almost as much as the initial cost.

Is there any thought being put in to how this coulld be better managed for regions where free shipping isnt an option?
i.e A lower subscription cost without the premium warranty might be an idea.

Lastly, I see that some regions you are including taxes (VAT etc.) in the price. Is this the same for GST in NZ? If not, I will have to pay an additional 15% :frowning:

Thanks for what you are doing!

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Thanks for the replies!

With respect to the subscription, perhaps a better question would be: If I were to get the phone and a subscription, then cancel the subscription after a year, what features would I lose? Is it just the repair plan? I personally may be engaged enough to subscribe in order to fund development, but don’t count on the average consumer doing that.

I am not sure what to tell you about how to differentiate yourself from Google Family, except to borrow a phrase from Google’s very early days: “don’t be evil”. I am sure that the functionality of Google Family is fine – I’m mostly not a user because Google harvests massive amounts of data on their users in a completely opaque way, and I think that is highly unethical, especially when children are involved. I would argue that the best way to differentiate yourself from Google would be to make Thrive FOSS, and commit to not harvesting data for commercial purposes. But, I’m coming from the /e/ side of the community here, so I’m probably going to be biased on that issue.

Beyond that, I would say that as a parent, I am more interested with setting boundaries than with surveilling my child. Being able to ban/approve apps is definitely a good start, I would say that having a similar feature built into the browser for blocking/approving URLs would also be helpful. Having the selective ability to locate the phone would be useful too, ie, something less comprehensive than location tracking that could be used in an emergency, and is less invasive than full-time tracking.

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Sorry VAT is only included for UK and EU.

Yes - we will fine-tune the product for non-warranty regions.