Adafruit Sucks Customer Reviews and Feedback

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Adafruit Industries is an open-source hardware company based in New York City. It was founded by Limor Fried in 2005. The company designs, manufactures and sells a number of electronics products, electronics components, tools and accessories. It also produces a number of learning resources, including live and recorded videos related to electronics, technology, and programming.

Hank shares his frustrating experience on Yelp, "I purchased an Adafruit Metro 328 Starter Pack[ID:68] = $44.95 Note that it's a "starter pack" - yet it came with no instructions. When I finally found the link they give for "tutorials" - it's for Arduino. Well, ok - but none of the parts look anywhere similar. So "lesson 1" is to make a led blink - but the led starts blinking as soon as you plug it into the USB - without any code at all. Tried reset, etc. - no change. So, alright - I'll just change the blink interval but the code just gives many lines of errors (using the supplied code - copied & pasted). Code appears ok (I'm a programmer) but most errors seem hardware related. Note - the code is years old, tutorial pages are several years old, etc. So contact "Support", right? Hah! Once I finally connected with someone, they told me I had to sign up for their forum, etc. where boards had posts that were also years old and I didn't find any satisfactory answers - not even close. If I (a programmer with over 30 years experience) can't get it to work, I doubt that your average "Joe" will have more luck. Save your money! Don't deal with these people."


Tell the world why Adafruit sucks!

I certify that this review is based on my own experiece and is my opinion of this person or business. I have not been offered any incentive or payment to write this review.


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Former Employee - Test Prep says

"micromanaged environment, toxic work culture"

Former Employee - Manager says

"Literally one of the most toxic environments I have had the displeasure of working at. Upper management is wildly inappropriate, uncooperative, dishonest and just plan not nice or good people. Take note, this company simply parades black people, POC and women around giving the appearance of equality and diversity only to grossly underpay and emotionally abuse said groups of people. Also considering they like to brag that they are a woman owned company. Just goes to show they care more about appearances. This behavior is very deliberate and intentional. The structure of Adafruit makes no sense. But you can’t voice that or any other valid concerns because leadership is so delusional and ego driven that they literally cant receive constructive and honest feedback. Keep in mind that if you speak up and stand up for yourself consider yourself a marked target and await the blatant abuse, bullying and attacks. The unwarranted retaliation can be emotionally taxing. The leaders are not above working their brutal magic to try and turn your coworkers and peers against you to save face. It’s not okay and it’s not normal. Upper management and leadership also thoroughly enjoy gaslighting folks and sending these passive aggressive emails in their bullying crusade to attack and intimidate all the while ending it with a smiley face. Weird. Not okay. They give you this false sense of transparency which is all bs. No need to seek out promotions because you literally won’t ever be paid appropriately for the title and responsibilities. What’s the point? Nothing they do is ok. If you want to preserve your mental health, professional development, growth and overall happiness and actually be employable somewhere else, I would steer clear."

Former Employee - Department Manager says

"Emotionally abusive and negligent management, uncomfortable cult-of-personality-culture around CEO/founder, extreme disorganization and a complete breakdown of communication."

Former Employee - Customer Service says

"They hate their customers, and force their customer service team to abuse them to avoid replacing defective product."

Current Employee - Anonymous Employee says

"False promises about flexibility in scheduling, in reality they are not flexible at all, unless you are management. Negative attitude and vibes from management."

Former Employee - Anonymous Employee says

"- boring, unfulfilling, repetitive tasks - dysfunctional management"

Current Employee - Prep says

"At this point I'd say the companies entire management needs to be change or rotated out. There no upward mobility and very few incentives to be productive. The pay is horrible , most making below 35,000 and very few raises . They claim to be extremely diverse but most of upper management is white and has no interest in promoting any P.O.C from within. Theres honestly not alot to enjoy about this company other then the pay cycle . Even the team meeting at this place are filled with pointless info and have just become HUGE time wasters. I'd never recommend this job to anyone I actually cared about."

Former Employee - Anonymous Employee says

"- Problematic structure at the top of the company leads to retaliatory management practices and an utter inability to address problems. - The way the company handles feedback is unprofessional and exasperates issues rather than addresses them. This comes from the top and seems rooted in double standards that go against the company’s stated mission. - Pay is embarrassingly low for most roles."

Current Employee - Shipper says

"People in management shouldn't be in management Favoritism for family/friends of people in power Micromanagement on employees"

Former Employee - Anonymous Employee says

"very hectic environment, can be tiresome"

truepudding says

"I got a eink clock recently that didn\'t work. I wanted to return it. Adafruit promptly said \"it\'s open, we wont accept the return\". They didn\'t even hear or care about the part that it is broken. I reiterated, they said \"check with the manufacturer\". So adafruit will sell you something, after owning it for three days, if it\'s defective, they send you to the manufacturer and wont accept the return. It is the most ridiculous thing i\'ve ever heard in my life. "

Tony Leaver says

"It's unfortunate that I can't leave 0 stars. They screwed up the shipping label and it got delivered somewhere else. I took the time and filed with UPS for them and requested that they ship a new one. They said I would have to wait until UPS finished their "investigation". It's a $5 part that I needed now. When I told them I couldn't wait for that time frame and I would just dispute the charge on my credit card if they wouldn't ship out a new one asap, they told me not to threaten them. Wow! What a horrible way of running a company. I have 300 employees and if 1 of them wrote an email like that, they would instantly be fired. AVOID THIS COMPANY AT ALL COST!"

RussKi says

"If I cared about your politics I'd ask."

Curt Rowlett Strange Beacons says

"Purchased an LCD with SD card. It arrived and I wired it up. The LCD would not turn on. I checked the wiring again and it finally turned on, then began dimming, until it finally went off again. I was not able to get it to work again, even after checking the wiring a third and a fourth time. I'm not a newbie with electronics and I know what I'm doing. When I contacted Adafruit support, they directed me to post about the problem on their forum, which relectantly I did. I want to say that this is a huge hassle. I'm almost positive the part is defective. Having to spend time writing out a small essay and waiting to hear from someone on a forum is very inconvenient and essentially is designed to frustrate anyone from following through on trying to get a refund. I will never purchase from Adafruit again unless they change this policy. I advise anyone who is considering purchasing from this company to think twice, as they do not stand behind their products. It is obvious to me that the part is defective, yet they force customers to go through this ridiculous routine. No thanks. Update: Adafruit finally refunded my money, but banned me from ever purchasing from them again, all for complaining about their lousy customer service. That has to be the crappiest business plan that I have ever encountered. Do yourself a favor and don't purchase from these people."

Julius Tomsits says

"Have purchased items from them for years. Recently purchased an OLED display for $39. After the display arrived I wired it up exactly as directed on their web site. The display did display an image but the image was VERY VERY dim. I tried a different library but still way to dim to work with. I contacted "customer support" and informed them of the problem. They directed me toward their forum for assistance. After several days of no response I emailed customer support to inform them of the no response. A support person did post on the site requesting additional information. I provided that the same day. After several more days I did not receive a response on the forum. I again email them informing them that I was not satisfied with the support I'm receiving. I was then banned from their site and could not even track orders I had still in progress. They did refund my purchase of the OLED but then emailed me asking me to seek another vendor. A very good suggestion. No phone support, no direct email support, never contacted by the same person and a very bad attitude when things go wrong with their defective products. The OLED display was not produced by them but they sell it and wont support it. They act like a bunch of children."

Lex de Smets says

"We are a very serious company and we don't have time to play around. The reason why we bought from them is because we thought we can trust them as many of you think. That's the only reason why we decided to pay 2 or 3 times as much for some items they are selling. We soon came to conclusion that higher prices does not go hand in hand with service or quality. They sell the same stuff that you would find on those cheap Chinese websites. We paid with Pay-pal. We had a exposition and had very busy times. After that was done we could focus on the bought materials. We open a refund request and as soon as we requested a PARTIAL refund our account got terminated. Who does such a thing? This reflects the personality of the CEO without any doubt. This is the worst customer experience I have ever had. You are far better buying stuff from a ghost website out in India or China as long as you pay by Pay-pal. I cant believe that such a big company in the US behaves this way. I must say this is not the first time I had problems with US companies when it comes to service. READ the negative reviews first! They are the only ones that matter when you are out of luck not the positive ones! The positive ones should be more than normal that you are getting what you paid for ! There is no such thing as a positive feedback! Unless you get a surprise with it or bonuses or whatever, but I doubt it. READ the negative reviews only they matter the most !!! As a professional you can not rely on their support so forget it!"

Unhappy Customer says

"Adafruit shipped the wrong item. When I send them an email about the item which was shipped in error, I get a the same canned response. It is like they have a robot program answering the emails. They refuse to get me a phone nmuber so I cant get this issue with them resolved. Very unhappy about the lack of customer support."

Larry Scott says

"Adafruit would not answer a simple question, if they have a they a vga shield. There reply was, “we do not provide engineering support”. Wow! Pretty terrible experience!"

Jarl Gjessing says

"I have bought the Adafruit Fona 808, actually many of them, but I do need some support, but as you can see there are no support on their forums. I'm never going to buy any products at adafruit again, and I will never suggest them to others. So now I'm making my own 808 modem :-) And buying my hardware at Sparkfun instead"

Volker Foerster says

"We sell products compatible to Adafruit products, and we have a statement (email to me) from Adafruit that it would be allowed to call our own products for example "compatible to Neopixel" or "Adafruit Neopixel compatible". Adafruit's Limor Fried is bigmouthing about how great they do for the Open-Hardware and Open-Source community, but on the other hand they keep opening intellectual property infringement claims on Amazon against our products, and have our products removed, risking our reputation and Amazon account health, despite the clear description of our products to be "compatible with Neopixel library for Arduino", for example. The only reason for this acting is, that Adafruit wants to sell their own, big time overpriced products, and fights other sellers of equal hardware. Limor if you don't want that other companies make the same products and say that their products are compatible to your's, then just change the license you use. To take somebody else's product (WS2812B LEDs), and give it your own brand name, and then fight everyone who mentions the compatibility with your product, is effrontery."

2k9Tia says

"I bought three adafruit feather fona boards. One was working as expected, but the other two weren't recognized by my pc (since one was recognized correctly, it can't be a driver issue...). So I wrote a post in their forum (which is the only official kind of support they offer) but got no response. When sending an email, they only point you to the forums and that the will tell their support staff to have a look at my post. But, of course, nothing happened and my next mail was simply ignored. Worst customer experience ever - every shop on aliexpress has better customer support..."

Emmett says

"Bought a Raspberry Pi 3 board, and after two weeks of service, it died. Tried to contact customer service for warranty replacement via phone and email, and was referred to a forum. Sent four forum posts, which were ignored. Finally got a response after I emailed a bunch of times, and was told that since I opened the box, they wouldn't take anything back. They told me that I blew up the board. These people warranty nothing, and refuse to provide any acceptable customer service. Buy from Amazon. At least they'll take things back that are defective."

Tyler says

"We have been ordering thousands of dollars of parts through Adafruit for over a year, and the first time we reached out to them in need of some support, the Director of Support replied with the rudest email I've ever seen from a support team. We had a very simple request, and she didn't even try to help us, other than asking if we wanted to cancel the order. The worst part is that the reason we had to reach out is because they sent us 4 faulty products. She didn't even mention this in her response, and would take no responsibility for it. I'm taking my business elsewhere and I would suggest others do the same. As a business owner myself, I know there's just no excuse for treating loyal customers like that."

John Smith says

"Purchased a product from their site. A tracking number was provided a few days later, but it stayed in "pre-shipment" status for over 9 days, meaning that it was never handed over to the USPS. When I initially emailed them, they simply said it was already shipped, even though it still said pre-shipment. I waited a couple days then asked for a refund when nothing had changed. Fortunately, they gave me the refund right away. I don't think I would have ever received that item. I was disappointed because they boast fast shipping times on their website."

John Gaarsoe says

"So many cool things. Too bad about the prices, though. And shipping? Holy cow! $16 to ship a $29 item. No thanks. And how can the username and password that logged me in 20 minutes ago stop working 20 minutes later (double checked password/caps, etc., still no luck. And where are those password reset instructions that your website claimed it sent me? I have been waiting and waiting, and nothing in either my inbox or spam folder after 15 minute. (Clunky and broken websites only add to the frustration.) Ah well, I guess it doesn't really matter anyway since I will probably not be back to pay those high prices for both products and shipping. By the way, I purchased the exact same item on Amazon for a comparable price and paid $0 for shipping (hard to compete with that, Adafruit)."

Aman Shah says

"overall decent. They actually have a very wide range of products which is unusually nice for these niche tech companies. Customer service is average. However, don't buy anything that seems unique or has a possibility of not working begoz I bought some PowerBoost 500 thing to increase my voltage and the battery plug got stuck inside and broke. The charger also set on fire when I put a different battery in. That part was unfortunate."

Megan says

"Adafruit has a lot of products, but they are somewhat overpriced and the customer service and support isn't great."