Sunday, March 24, 2019

Stage Two of Buying Shit on Kickstarter

The review is mirrored on DreamClassierReviews

Kiwi 4
This is meant to be an OBDII leave-in device, to give you all the bells and whistles of what you vehicle is doing while it's doing it, in addition to giving you the error codes that a shop would use to figure out what the ubiquitous check engine light actually turned on for.

I say meant to, because, well, it doesn't work.

Registration and Warranty
Before you do anything, you have to register the device for warranty coverage. Good luck on that. You have two choices: a) register through Facebook messenger (yes, really) or 2) register on the website.

I picked the website because, well, Facebook.

And... there's no "Kiwi 4" option in the devices list. According to their customer service,
Thank you for purchasing a PLX Device. To register your product please visit
No shit, Sherlock.
For Kiwi 4, please select Kiwi 3 then on the bottom field for specific retailer write that it is for a Kiwi 4. 

That doesn't seem entirely legit, but fine, whatever. I can follow directions, and if there's a problem, they told me to do it.

Okay, device registered.

It's pretty much plug and play. The Kiwi 4 is supposed to compatible with all OBDII vehicles, so if was manufactured in this millennia, you're good. Hardest part isn't locating the port, it's plugging it in, because the port is usually somewhere in the driver's footwell.

Device installed, app downloaded, bluetooth paired, no problemo.

The App
The app looks a little unpolished, but it's a new device, so I guess I shouldn't be too surprised.

Now, the "manual" says this isn't recommended for devices running Android 7.0 or later (combined with the Facebook registration and the Kiwi 3 thing under warranty makes this sound shady as all hell, but whatever, I dropped $89 bucks on this thing, I'm game).

Entered in my car's details, which was a pain in the ass because it forces you to use landscape orientation for no particular reason, but hey, unpolished, right? Save the details, turn on my car, hit the connect button...

And nothing. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Can't get a connection on either my Android 6 device or my Android 6 device.

In addition to that, in order to "unlock" all the features, you have to purchase licenses. On top of the money you already footed out for this thing, which is looking increasingly like a cheap piece of over-engineered and under-tested plastic.
  • Basic (Multigiuages, Fuel Efficieny, Diagnostics) - "Free"
  • Performance License Add On - "Coming Soon"
  • Data Logging License Add On - $4.99 + tax
  • Video Overlay License Add On - $4.99 + tax
  • Deluxe License (All Functions) - "Coming Soon"
But if it doesn't connect, well, I guess you're up this shit creek with me. Welcome to the Stage Two of pitfalls of buying stuff from Kickstarter (stage one is not getting anything at all; stage two is you got something, but it doesn't work or look right).

You should totally buy this thing if you haven't read a word I've said or you have more money than sense.

Registration: Dubious at best
Installation: My back hurts
App:  Shady as f***

View the product page at

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