Happy New Year! 🎉
As 2023 draws to a close, we wanted to take a moment to reflect on the year! It's been a busy year for us, and we're excited to share some highlights with you.
This post is the next in a series of yearly posts, the last of which can be found in our 2022 Year in Review post.
It's been a busy year for us, with a lot of changes and growth, unfortunately, much of which has been behind the scenes,
so we've not been able to share as much as we'd like.
That said, we've got a lot of exciting things that we'll be sharing with you in the coming months!
The big news of the year came in September, but we'll talk about that later.
Let's start with some numbers!
Throughout 2023 we have shipped:
- 3500+ orders
- 9500+ smart plugs
- 1500+ zigbee sensors
Throughout the entire year, we dispatched 70% of orders on the same day.
96% of orders were dispatched within 72 hours.
Nb: This includes backorders and weekend orders which will have a longer dispatch time.
Ultimately, I started this business as a side project, but it's grown a lot since then. In September, I took the plunge and went full time with Local Bytes!
My intention with Local Bytes was always to give back to a community that has given me so much, and I'm excited to be able to now do that full time!
We discussed in-depth what this does and doesn't mean in our relaunch post, which you can find here Hello Again - Welcome to Local Bytes.
2023 has seen the introduction of our incubator range,
which has been a great success!
It's formed part of our ongoing mission to increase our transparency in giving back to the community.
Currently, we're incubating three products:
- Power Strip - Preflashed & Preconfigured
This is a 4-gang power strip, with each socket individually controllable.
Based on your response, we'll be starting off with a Tasmota, with ESPHome to follow.
Update due in February 2024.
- WLED Strip Controller
This is a WLED controller, for use with addressable LED strips, like the WS2812B.
We'll be bundling this with a 5m strip, and a power supply!
Update due in March 2024.
- Super Secret Project
This is a super-secret project, that we're not quite ready to share yet.
We'll be sharing more details in the coming months, so keep an eye out! Update due in April 2024.
To help us grow, we've brought on a few new people to help us out!
We've brought on the services of a freelance project manager,
to help me keep on top of everything, and to help in assessing which suppliers are best for us to work with.
They've been of great help, making significant progress with the Power Strip project and WLED Strip Controller.
They also put together the change/cancel order form, allowing us to improve your experience when making changes to your existing orders.
Additionally, we've started working with a mechanical engineer who has been helping us design our own products.
They've been working on the Super Secret Project, and have been a great help in getting it off the ground!
Originally, we had 3D printed enclosures designed by myself, but they've been working on a much more professional design!
We can't wait to share more details with you!
Over the next 12 months, we'll be looking to get all of our products out of the incubator and into your hands!
We're also looking at starting our own forum, to help us to better engage with our customers, and to help you find the answers you need faster!
Finally, we're continuing to work on our documentation to help you get the most out of your products. Not only by way of text-based guides, but also with video tutorials on our new YouTube channel!
As always, we take suggestions from our customers very seriously,
and we're always looking for new products to add to our range.
You can make suggestions via our socials!
Local Bytes would not be where it is today without the help of a few notable individuals and organisations, without whom, we would not be able to operate:
- The Tasmota Team! Tasmota is an amazing piece of software that allows anything running ESP-8266's (and similar) to operate in a highly customisable manner.
- The ESPHome Team! This year we started to ship products with ESPHome, once again lowering the barrier to entry for home automation.
- All of our customers! Ultimately, as a customer-first business, you are all key to our survival!
- The Local Bytes Insiders! A small group of our customers who have been helping us to test new products and features.
- You, the reader! If you've made it this far
This has truly been a year to remember, and we're excited to see what 2024 has in store for us.
I cannot wait to see how we can expand our range, improve our products, and help you upgrade your smart home!
Founder & CEO - Local Bytes