UFactory, a hardware or software company?

I have come to the conclusion that uFactory is more about software than hardware (or should!). After all, hardware is cheap, and getting ever cheaper. A quick look at taobao.com or aliexpress.com will show you that there are a number of robotic arms for sale. Some of these arms seem to be of at least equal if not superior quality (in terms of DOF as well as servo choice) to the uArm; moreover, they are all cheaper than uArm by far. But, wait, lest you think I am trashing uFactory, let me hasten to stress that I still prefer uArm to these other alternatives mainly because of the support I get from uFactory. I would imagine one would not get any support at all from those other manufacturers, certainly not in terms of software. To be sure, uFactory support can be a bit spotty at times, but still, one can generally be sure that one’s queries will get answered, if only with varying delays. So I hope someone at uFactory will read this post and respond. I think uFactory should henceforth give more weight to providing better software support. The new firmware along with the new gCode-based communications protocol are all encouraging developments, even though it has apparently been tricky for some of the existing customers to upgrade. Part of the problem is that the quality of some of uFactory’s manuals/guides is still not up to par, though they do improve with each revision. Also, even though the new communications protocol is much easier to program to, the response times of the uArm to some basic commands seem to be much slower. For example, it used to take less than 9 msec to retrieve uArm’s firmware version. Now it takes some 5000 msec to do the same thing! Why the huge difference?! I suspect if uFactory were to spend more time fine-tuning its software, we would not see such baffling discrepancies. Anyway, enough said. I would love to hear what other uArm users have to say. To the folks in uFactory, please be sure I am writing as a fan and a supporter, not as a critic. I would love for you guys to be really successful and make it big!

Thanks for your feedback, we really appreciate it. As you said, currently we are a hardware company. There are still a lot of work to do both in hardware and software (especially in software). Three years ago, we set up UFactory in order to offer people easy-to-use robot arm all around the world, but now it seems that we didn’t do it well. Although we tried hard to help everyone who got trouble with the arm, there are still someone we didn’t help well. I must apologize here.
During these years, we spent a lot of time in R&D and want to create something breakthrough for our customers. We made a lot of mistakes and wasted a lot of time. Because desktop robot arm is a totally new field, we do need to explore it by trial and errors. From now on, we must step by step. Not long ago, we released the 2.0 firmware of the uarm metal, there are still some problems there and we have got some feedback of the troubles. I promise we will fix the bugs and improve the documents soon. What’s more, by releasing the 2.0 code, we do want our customers to know that we will keep offering the service for them and will not let them alone. All the staffs here now are working hard to develop something new and we will keep you updated about each step.

Thank you so much for being with us!