It has now been over two years now since I and thousands of others around the world pre-ordered the Viper ASIC Scrypt miners from the Manchester, UK based Alpha Technology. No-one has yet received a miner, refund or an update of the fraud investigation from Greater Manchester Police.
This is something that is baffling many in the industry as they still haven’t even a finished product to ship on a promise gave in May 2014 that they would begin dispatching the miners in July 2014 by the director Mohammed Akram.
“As we will not be spending more time on non-essential components, and as a result also require less final manufacturing and testing time, we will still be shipping in July; even with the increased hash rates”
This date has moved continuously throughout 2014/15 and now into 2016 with sporadic updates from the company claiming a new issue needs resolved each time.
Hopes of a refund were lifted for many of us in February of last year with word that the Manchester based ASIC Company may be facing a possible police investigation following information being reviewed by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) which found sufficient viable lines of inquiry.
Shortly after my article in March of the same year I was blocked from their Twitter account as well as previously being blocked from the forums which they now have removed altogether from their website although they have all been cached and are still available to view online.
Then in April 2015 there was yet another update from the director himself stating;
“We would like to once again thank you all for your patience during this final period. Be assured we are near shipment with just a few more steps to finish.”
This update also gave a link to video demonstration of the 50Mh/s device and their software; https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2Efyf7ZTfHfY19ZQjdSc0Zvem8/view?pli=1
The next update was in the following June with a video demonstration of the 250Mh/s device https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2Efyf7ZTfHfZllyanpmM3d4MVE/view?usp=sharing in which the company director claimed;
“As mentioned in our last update we are in the stages of finishing up work on the larger device before mass manufacturing of them both. We are now able to provide a demonstration of the 250Mh/s prototype which is nearly finalized.
“Once again we thank you for your patience and we will email you as soon as we have a shipping date which shouldn't be much longer now.”
This continued throughout the year with excuse after excuse in the updates, outright refusal to give people back their initial investment, change of business address yet again and an announcement that they were moving manufacturing from India to the UK because of flaws.
“We sent our system design for review before manufacturing to a UK based company who are experts in system design; they had found flaws in the system design which was made by the Indian design team.”
“Therefore, we have contracted this UK based company to commit to making these on both the 50Mh/s and 250Mh/s systems.”
The next update in October showed pictures of their SCRYPT board and enclosure with the director again stating;
“Once the testing of the SCRYPT boards is completed we will proceed with integration of the viper system and mass manufacturing/assembly.”
We are now approaching the end of January 2016; the last update on the 7th claimed another load of technical excuses about development this time it was working on the stability of their dc regulators, with no estimated date of shipping mentioned at all.
I don’t know of any other UK registered company that would get away with holding on to consumers money this long without either providing a refund or a finished product, we know that they were pending an investigation from the beginning of last year but have heard nothing since.
So the saga continues with Alpha-t, will we ever receive a refund, the ASIC Viper miner or a criminal fraud prosecution?
Going from the last couple of year’s progress, I’m not holding my breath!