Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 29th Feb 2012 09:47 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems This morning, I experienced the nerd equivalent of a Black Friday $50 iPad sale. At 07:00 CET, the first batch of the much-anticipated Raspberry Pi went on sale, and while Raspberry Pi itself was very properly prepared, the two large international retailers actually selling the device weren't - despite warnings from Raspberry Pi about the enormous amount of traffic that would come their way, the two sites crumbled to dust within seconds. There's good news too - the cheaper model A has seen its RAM doubled at no additional cost.
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Funny since for decades I've been buying a lot of the stuff that allegedly these two companies deal in...both retail and wholesale... and NEVER heard of them.

"RS Componants" looks like cheap ass fly by night clone of Digikey. Farnell you either have their main site that looks like a component "lister" (those useless pages that tell you there ARE such components, good luck ordering them) making it not even look as well established as Jameco... or even Adafruit. Then you have their goofy feel good 'community' which seems to be the only place you can actually do anything... never a good sign.

If anything, what I'm seeing looks more like wholesalers... when what they need is a retailer. That does indeed seem to be it... Wholesalers that near as I can tell don't even have a North America presence (probably why I never heard of them)... when what they needed is a global RETAILER. These are the types of companies you order 500+ bins of Cree LED's from for mass fab -- not hobbyist project boards.

If after fifteen minutes of struggling back and forth between three different browsers I still can't figure out where you would even pre-order ANYTHING from either company... NOT a good sign of legitimacy.

Either that or they're also blocking north american sales for some reason -- or my spamblockers are blocking them. (possible given the warnings Opera is throwing about "Farnell")

If they allegedly handle such large scale volumes of shipments, even with this hype it should have been piss in the bucket -- not 'site-breaking' disaster within minutes of it going live!

Even if they handle the volume of sales claimed, I suspect it's for a different type of market... and that can be all the difference in the world -- since there's a world of difference between corporate scale "maintenance products" and hobbyist scale project boards.

I mean really -- Mouser, Digikey -- is it that hard? While they seem the same focus, at least they have an online sales system that are actually are usable/functional.

Edited 2012-02-29 18:52 UTC

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