Scams

by Mike Masnick




Disposable Cell Phone Company Hop-On Wireless CEO Indicted For Fraud

from the and-yet-the-hype-goes-on... dept

Last year we had the story of how it looked like disposable cell phone company Hop-On Wireless was a scam. Since then, I've seen the company highly touted in many news stories, talking about how it was this great invention... but which no one seemed to be selling. Now, the CEO of Hop-On has been arrested for fraud, relating to work he did on an earlier company - but which brings up many parallels to Hop-On. The earlier company was an online gambling site, which he raised a lot of money for. However, they did so by showing software that was really someone else's software "cosmetically altered" to look like their own. Hop-On's "disposable phones" were really Nokia phones with their own plastic casing put around them. Then, he promised not to take any salary until the company was making enough money, but did still use the investors' money to pay off his credit card debts and then gave another shell company he owned a $500,000 contract. Eventually, that gambling company was morphed into Hop-On. This article also doesn't mention the fact that Hop-On got in trouble for not filing a tax return for a few years. They also were known for putting out press releases announcing huge deals with companies like Chevron after having a single exploratory meeting with them. I noticed in the past month or so that I'd been receiving spam emails touting Hop-On's stock. I wonder why... Hop-On had originally announced they would be selling the devices by 2001, but they still aren't for sale.

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  • identicon
    Oliver Wendell Jones, 19 Apr 2003 @ 7:27am

    Sadly...

    Sadly, I remember seeing this company touted in internal presentations at my company about how this represented a branding opportunity for us to give away cheap, disposable phones with out company logo on them and how we should support this company... :-(

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TAD, 20 Apr 2003 @ 7:35pm

    Why Can't Someone Else?

    Why can't another company do this? It seems like such a great idea! Or is the tech just not there yet?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      dorpus, 20 Apr 2003 @ 11:34pm

      Re: Why Can't Someone Else?

      I've read that making a cell phone under $100 is not currently feasible, and not expected to be any time soon.

      It may be a good thing though -- imagine the potential for fraud, crime with disposable cell phones. Telemarketers from hell.


      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    larry sode, 23 Apr 2003 @ 1:21pm

    the hop-on saga

    i was intrigued by the thought of a disposable phone..........tried to buy one..........got the runaround for the better part of 3 years, and now i read this..............it seemed like a scam.......the picture of their "corporate headquarters" in suite 110 was the iceing on the cake..........2 million phones to india...........and in the end all they seem to have sold was a few phones at a walgreens store in garden grove california..............having said that, it still would have been interesting to see one in person

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Alice, 16 Jan 2004 @ 9:56am

      Re: the hop-on saga

      I actually ordered a Hop-On from the Walgreens store in Gargen Grove! Guess what? ... it doesn't work.
      That's why they call it disposable, I guess.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Lou from Chicago Theatre, 12 May 2006 @ 9:17am

      Re: the hop-on saga

      fuck you larry.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Susan, 30 May 2006 @ 1:57pm

        Re: Re: the hop-on saga

        Well, "Lou", you may want to consider that "Larry" had a valid point, in that the company as a whole is as totally bogus as their "storefront" in Dallas, TX.
        I know, as I work in the same building, just across the hall as a matter of fact. They were kicked out months ago after all of their staffers cleaned out their offices and hit the trail. But then, maybe you were an investor? Or maybe just someone without literacy beyond words with four letters?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          David, 17 Aug 2006 @ 7:15am

          Re: Re: Re: the hop-on saga

          Susan or other people who know about this company I am interested to know more. Does the company still exist? Where are they now? Is their internet Site correct with the new headquarters?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sandra Kendall, 21 Oct 2004 @ 1:57pm

    Hop on cell phones

    What a pity that people cheat and steal, and can't use their own ideas. Hop on phones sounded really good, but all along I thought something wasn't right. The company kept advertising that they were supplying phones all over the wordl except one problem, they hadn't been introduced first in the United States. They kept changing the date that they would be offered in the United States. I wouldn't even consider purchasing a hop on phone if another company took over. THis has burned me.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    David Perry, 10 Jan 2007 @ 6:24pm

    Any News

    Seems to be lots of frustraion with Hop On. I worked with them several years ago in Dallas on new cell phone designs and they ordered lots of parts from us. Has anything happened since the supposed reorg last year? Did they just rip thier investors off?

    - curious

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    William Murray, 11 Apr 2007 @ 9:13pm

    HOP-ON stocks

    I noticed that the stock is still going up. It went from .0012 to .035 in the past couple of months.
    stock symbol - HPNN

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    William Murray, 11 Apr 2007 @ 9:24pm

    Has anyone noticed the date on this article?

    Has anyone noticed the date on that article? Friday, April 18th, 2003 @ 2:23PM

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Michael Spears, 2 Mar 2008 @ 1:06pm

    hop on sux

    I purchased a wireless unit for my nokia phone. Not only didnt it work, their site was useless. When you type something (a model number) in the search feature nothing happens. I mean NOTHING...like the search feature is disconnected.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    John Mayer, 3 Jul 2008 @ 4:13pm

    Hop On still around?

    I remember when the stock was hpon.pk, I invested some money in them and lost it all. I didn't know they changed there stock name to hpnn.pk I guess they are still scamming people thinking this is a real company.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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