The dreamers of Shenzhen’s Maker’s revolution

Another great Shenzhen-Geek tour video from Metalworks:  Maker Faire Shenzhen Trip  Daylon Soh writes:

When the Metalworks team was there in April, we were part of a group of aspiring hardware entrepreneurs and enthusiasts from North America and Europe. Most were looking to bring their hardware product ideas to fruition and were looking for ways to manufacture it cheaply in the city. Some of them would bring their product prototypes back home and raise money on crowd-funding platforms like Kickstarter to get enough pre-sales volume to qualify for cheaper per unit costs. But all of them stumbled with language and cultural differences as we soon learn that everything in the city has a lao wai price and a local Chinese price. 老外 (Lao Wai), is what foreigners of European descent would be called in China, its literal translation would be “old outsider”.


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  1. The difference in pricing is mainly due to uncertainty and expectation that lao wai are more demanding and at the same time the added cost of communications, and to a certain extent that the product from the “lao wai” are sold at an obscene price in china relatively to the income level.

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