X10 Files For Bankruptcy – Guess Those Pop Unders Didn't Work So Well

from the spy-on-this dept

Back before the days of pop-up ads, X10 was actually considered a pretty cool company. They offered simple-to-use and inexpensive home automation offerings. I used to know someone who had his whole house set up with X10 stuff, so he could control all of his lights via a single remote control (though, it had an annoying delay). Then came the pop up ads. X10, more than anyone else, really went crazy with those pop up ads focused on their spy cameras, and lost just about all the goodwill they had built up before. Apparently, those pop up ads haven’t done them much good, because the company just filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Of course, this might have something to do with the legal loss we spoke about yesterday, where they’re being told to pay $4.3 million to the set of young brothers who created the pop up ad campaign. The filing reveals that the company has less than $10 million in assets, but debts ranging between $10 million and $50 million. Quite a lot of their debt is owed to various advertising companies or sites that run their ads. So, not only did X10 bring about the second most annoying internet advertising revolution (after spam), it looks like they didn’t even make any money doing so.

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Comments on “X10 Files For Bankruptcy – Guess Those Pop Unders Didn't Work So Well”

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Cimos says:

Re: X10 Goes Dim

I’m really chuffed these people have gone bankrupt and I hope other pop-up users will take note. So far as I am concerned, sticking a pop-up on your computer is the same and someone coolly walking into your house and changing the TV channel. We wouldn’t put up with that and we shouldn’t put up with this. I think all companies who stick pop-ups on people’s computers are pathetic and should be shunned and flamed wherever possible. Lots of insults to them might make them realise they are making no friends and as a consumer attracting tactic it has the opposite effect. These are people I certainly would never deal with.

Anonymous Coward says:

not that great a product anyway

I think x10.com is built into every popup-killer’s blacklist!

Personally, I think the products are too expensive for the quality – you have to have really good electrical wiring for the kits to work properly, otherwise, you turn off the lounge light and the kitchen light goes on!

Oliver Wendell Jones (profile) says:

Re: not that great a product anyway

I have a lot of X-10 electronics in my house and I’ve not had any problems with any of the switches activating the wrong items – ever.

The only one that’s been a problem is the one that runs the fan. Sometimes you have to turn it off twice to get it to work.
I’ve been using X-10 stuff since back in the day of the Commodore 64 (1985?) and still use many of those same modules.

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

X10’s hardware (aka PLC Power Line Control) is in widespread use in home automation circles. It has drawbacks – it’s slow (protocol equal to about 34 baud), it is easily overwhelmed by noise, and many homes are wired in two “phases” which it does not cross… however, there are widely known, simple, cheap, ways to get reliable X10 systems. Check out any of several home automation lists, or checkout http://www.misterhouse.net for some open-source home auto.

Having said all of that… most people know X10 via their annoying pop-under ads and even more annoying “order before midnight” promotion laden site. I for one am GLAD to seem them go… because they’ve sat on the basic patents for control over the powerline for 30+ years with no improvements or innovations. I sincerly hope their control of the patents goes to someone who will move forward! 34 baud, indeed!

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