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Not going to buy any more Autels

ted1970

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
 

phantomrain.org

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I think its good to have both the Autel and the DJi as they can both cause trouble at times , but you will find which one sits on the shelf the longest. Keep in mind that because of the Geo Dance with death, for many this is the only option. I recommend you pick up the DJi Air 2S and see life on the other side.

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Gear to fly your Evo 2 in the Rain .
 

jlanni

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
Precisely. Pork me once, you are on your own pal. What Autel did was officially a porking. I do not understand why Autel would just drop everything Evo I. Even if they came up with better equipment, why not have a a reliable "old" bird around for beginners and the many that do not require the latest and greatest? Evo I, I thought to be an upper middle of the road utility. Mine has never let me down except the one issue with the two original batteries. One came back, the other is probably junk. If Autel did not want to continue, the should have sold off the tooling and tech for a % to a third party just to take care of customers. Its called good will and essential for trust. Autel can stick it and if my evo I crashes and burns today, see ya Autel, I know your kind and you won't see me or my money again. Sorry for being sour about it. Not sorry.
 

herein2021

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@ted1970 @jlanni I get your concerns and I know that being on the receiving end of this situation is frustrating to say the least, but your expectations and comparisons to DJI just aren't realistic.

DJI has a market cap of 10T to Autels 30B; that's over 300x larger than Autel. There is no third party vendor who is going to make parts or recycle batteries for older Autel models.....they would never recoup their original investment. Just like Autel is not going to keep supporting products that they can't make a profit off of, no business would last for long if they did this. Even cars typically only come with a 3yr warranty and they cost many times what a drone cost.

I have been running various businesses for over 10yrs now; I look at the business side of it and I knew going into this that I was buying into a niche drone system whose only real advantage over DJI was the lack of geofencing. This is also why I would never buy the smart controller, any batteries that I don't need, and any accessories that I don't need; instead of being mad at Autel you could just sell all of your current gear and buy the latest model which is what I am going to do when it comes out, or sure you could go to the DJI camp but I can tell you it has horrendous downsides of its own such as geofencing and very invasive data collection practices.

On the one hand you are going to reap the benefits of buying into a much larger ecosystem and on the other hand you are also going to encounter the downsides as well. For some of us like myself, those downsides outweighed the benefits in the end. Personally I lost a DJI Mavic Pro due to a glitch on their geofencing software that force landed it in the ocean.
 

Royce_007

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I wont defend Autel but I do have so many other pieces of equipment that are in the same situation. Look at all those poor smucks that bought an early 2020 Apple Computer and then Apple introduces the M processor and cheaper computers 5 times faster. We have never been where we are today as far as choices in technology. The writing is on the wall that any purchase in technology has the potential of being outdated almost instantly. Do I sell my Inspire 2 because Mavic 3 is going to hit it out the park? My Inspire 2 has paid for itself over and over and in spite of DJI not continuing to make pieces and parts I can still do ProRes 5.2K and have had very few issues since 2018. I have a ton of equipment in the same situation. I have to buy what works for me. Let me know if you really can't find any parts such as batteries. For me I will double down and buy used batteries and parts for the Evo 2 Pro since some ppl are jumping ship.
 

jlanni

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@ted1970 @jlanni I get your concerns and I know that being on the receiving end of this situation is frustrating to say the least, but your expectations and comparisons to DJI just aren't realistic.

DJI has a market cap of 10T to Autels 30B; that's over 300x larger than Autel. There is no third party vendor who is going to make parts or recycle batteries for older Autel models.....they would never recoup their original investment. Just like Autel is not going to keep supporting products that they can't make a profit off of, no business would last for long if they did this. Even cars typically only come with a 3yr warranty and they cost many times what a drone cost.

I have been running various businesses for over 10yrs now; I look at the business side of it and I knew going into this that I was buying into a niche drone system whose only real advantage over DJI was the lack of geofencing. This is also why I would never buy the smart controller, any batteries that I don't need, and any accessories that I don't need; instead of being mad at Autel you could just sell all of your current gear and buy the latest model which is what I am going to do when it comes out, or sure you could go to the DJI camp but I can tell you it has horrendous downsides of its own such as geofencing and very invasive data collection practices.

On the one hand you are going to reap the benefits of buying into a much larger ecosystem and on the other hand you are also going to encounter the downsides as well. For some of us like myself, those downsides outweighed the benefits in the end. Personally I lost a DJI Mavic Pro due to a glitch on their geofencing software that force landed it in the ocean.I

I think that Autel went about EOL considerations to the customer in a way that is less than desirable for any business. I have owned my EVO I for 2.5 years and when purchased was not aware of any plans to scuttle the EVO I along with those that bought one. I did not infer Autel was as large a company only that I thought its product was comparable and in ways superior the the larger DJI for my intended use. You are right about the geo fencing and I felt, upfront cost to be considerations. I would not even purchase a pair of jeans that did not last 2.5 years. I hear what you are saying about the DJI but the answer is not to reward a company that just shot my drone out of the air. I did not say that I purchased the Air 2 yet but I did say is that I was looking and that I was not considering Autel. Not even for a moment.
 

herein2021

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I think that Autel went about EOL considerations to the customer in a way that is less than desirable for any business. I have owned my EVO I for 2.5 years and when purchased was not aware of any plans to scuttle the EVO I along with those that bought one. I did not infer Autel was as large a company only that I thought its product was comparable and in ways superior the the larger DJI for my intended use. You are right about the geo fencing and I felt, upfront cost to be considerations. I would not even purchase a pair of jeans that did not last 2.5 years. I hear what you are saying about the DJI but the answer is not to reward a company that just shot my drone out of the air. I did not say that I purchased the Air 2 yet but I did say is that I was looking and that I was not considering Autel. Not even for a moment.

I think part of it is that this industry is so new and moving so fast that companies (both DJI and Autel) are leaving customer service in the dirt. I think at a minimum Autel should support batteries for their products for 3yrs and my biggest pet peeve with the whole thing is that there is no way to overcome the battery problem; LiPo batteries start to expire the day they are made, if you don't charge them at all they will go bad from sitting discharged and if you do charge them they will go bad due to a finite number of charge cycles remaining..in essence, there is no way around the battery problem if vendors don't keep making them.

Until battery technology improves and drone technology matures I think there's going to be a lot of unhappy customers all around. Drones are the only pieces of equipment that I treat this way; I have camera bodies, flashes, lenses, and various camera accessories that are over 10yrs old and would gladly do the same thing with my drone equipment if I could; but due to the realities of the industry I charge my customers even more for drone services so that I ensure that they pay for themselves many times over in the ~3yrs or so that I own the equipment prior to selling it.
 
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jlanni

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I just saw this post a few min ago which leads to this article which further perfectly proves my point regarding DJI.
Yes, well known. There is no doubt research into exactly what and from whom the Chinese seek data before making a drone purchase of any kind. Get into what Facebook is allowed to do with personal accounts unless switched off. Most have no idea. Need to dig for it but it is there. Same thing with Google beginning toady with their 2nd verification code. Google literally has everything now on all my devices and phone. Everything. Contacts, photos, messages. email, search data, purchases and more Everything. To get even a small grip on this, I would need to leave FB, Youtube, Block everything Google, get rid of my phone for a flip phone and change my number. It is not only China, it is here. We are heading towards the Chinese social score system. Big Brother and the surveillance state.
 
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Vic Moss

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I just saw this post a few min ago which leads to this article which further perfectly proves my point regarding DJI.
Carr's tweet was 100% about politics, not security. He is soon going to be replaced, and he's trying to make his mark before he is. He replacement was nominated on the 26th.

Also, this is about D.C.'s hatred of China, not DJI. So Autel is also in the crosshairs of the Paranoids who run D.C. I strongly advise you to stop your happy dance and look at it geo-politically. Because that's how it works in D.C.

Also, this will never happen. It's unlikely anyone in D.C. is stupid enough to kill an industry that is supposed to be over $64 Billion by 2025.

It's idiotic political grandstanding on a scale we've never seen before. Carr is now out, and it won't happen.
 
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Ungava

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
I agree with you Ted. My EVO 2 Pro V1 is a great machine and I enjoy it very much. I was really looking forward to purchasing the Smart Controller but after Autels disastrous handling of the chip shortage and the intro of the V2, I know my V1 is on death row... I purchased in April of this year. I have a fleet of DJI products and still fly my first drone, the Spark, It is still fully supported and batteries and accessories are everywhere. My cash and my future droning goes to DJI including next week for a Mavic 3.
 

quinn karter

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
The Evo 1 is way outdated in my opinion, but I'm only saying that probably because I never owned one. But, as far as drone's go, I try to update at least every 5 years. I sell the ones older than that, if I can.
 

deltafar

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I think that Autel went about EOL considerations to the customer in a way that is less than desirable for any business. I have owned my EVO I for 2.5 years and when purchased was not aware of any plans to scuttle the EVO I along with those that bought one. I did not infer Autel was as large a company only that I thought its product was comparable and in ways superior the the larger DJI for my intended use. You are right about the geo fencing and I felt, upfront cost to be considerations. I would not even purchase a pair of jeans that did not last 2.5 years. I hear what you are saying about the DJI but the answer is not to reward a company that just shot my drone out of the air. I did not say that I purchased the Air 2 yet but I did say is that I was looking and that I was not considering Autel. Not even for a moment.
At least you didn't buy yours 3 days before the announcement like I did... It didn't bother me that much at first since I was coming from a 3dr Solo... Now I'm bummed since there isn't any aftermarket support at all... Now I'm in a worse boat, At least with the solo there are individuals making all kinds of components to keep them going and improve them. If your Gimble goes out there are after market ones that can actually be adapted to it and will allow you to move to the latest version of version of the GoPro. If you have a Gimble or camera issue with an Evo one you're screwed unless you're able to find somebody with a crashed 1 that didn't break theirs.It's just kind of a bummer I was happy to be somewhere where I thought I would at least be able to get manufacturer support for a little while I was not expecting it forever but at least longer than the period of time that I have it. I guess I will be looking elsewhere in the future.
 
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YuKay

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
I'm in the same boat. I don't need, don't want and can't afford the latest stuff: my EVO1 does everything that I need from a drone and produces sensationally good video. Although only lightly used, I kept my four batteries properly charged and last week two of them reported "Battery Damaged" in the RC - even though they were both showing 100% green LEDs. I couldn't bring them back to life so now I'm on death row waiting for the other two to die - and with them a perfectly good drone will bite the dust after just 2.5 years.

It isn't right. It wouldn't be allowed to happen in Europe. I was looking around for a new smart TV the other day - and those things don't tend to be manufactured for long before the next great model comes and takes their place. But the EU paperwork for this (Chinese) TV committed to providing service for the unit for 7 years after they stop making it while parts would be produced for 8 years after the last unit was was made.
 

GLEvideo

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We just need to take control of the situation and begin making repairs and updates ourselves. Since EVO is an end of life product and no longer supported or serviced then we have the right to repair them ourselves. This issue was brought up against Apple for consumers to repair their iPhones so they don't have to always upgrade to the more expensive model...it even went to court...and Apple lost. Consumers have the right to repair. If some of the software engineers could start digging into the code we could modify it in ways that the EVO batteries would not display on the controllers as "DAMAGED". They are not damaged but rather the software will only allow .05% deviation of voltage between cells. Way too tight of tolerance. If we can open that up to around 2 or 3% then current batteries will be able to fly safely for much more time to come. Other upgrades to the firmware could potentially be made as well. We could post disassembly, repair and reassembly video tutorials on line to aid anyone needing to repair a broken aircraft or controller. Since Autel refuses to do this we have the right to take it on ourselves.
 

YuKay

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Just had this email response from Autel about fixing my two batteries which report "damaged" when I load them up with all LEDs blazing:

"Unfortunately, our Autel EVO I has has already end [sic] its service (Phased out) a long time ago. At this time, the only solution would be for you to purchase refurbished batteries from our team here in North America and have them shipped to the UK.
It would be about £190 ($ 260 USD).
Our refurbished batteries are guaranteed to have 10 cycles or less on them at the time of purchase, so you would not see too much (if any) difference between a brand new battery and a refurbished one."

These batteries were reported on offer at Best Buy a month ago for $30. I guess if I were a commercial operator desperately needing to get the EVO airborne again, I would shell out and whack it onto the client's invoice. But since I'm not - and since I know there's a high risk of these batteries suffering the same fate as the old ones, I'm going to pass, leave my EVO out in the desert to die and never buy another Autel product.

Soon everyone will feel this way and that will be EOL for Autel.
 

Props McGavin

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NO secrets with me that im a disgruntled EVO 1 user. 18 months into my ownership, I chased up Autel for some parts and repairs that I was happy to pay for but got stonewalled. Check my previous salty posts where I warned that EVO 2 users would be in the same boat when the new models come out. They simply do not support anything that not is there current model. Autel are a disgrace and ill be in here forever making sure everyone knows about it :)
 
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deltafar

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We just need to take control of the situation and begin making repairs and updates ourselves. Since EVO is an end of life product and no longer supported or serviced then we have the right to repair them ourselves. This issue was brought up against Apple for consumers to repair their iPhones so they don't have to always upgrade to the more expensive model...it even went to court...and Apple lost. Consumers have the right to repair. If some of the software engineers could start digging into the code we could modify it in ways that the EVO batteries would not display on the controllers as "DAMAGED". They are not damaged but rather the software will only allow .05% deviation of voltage between cells. Way too tight of tolerance. If we can open that up to around 2 or 3% then current batteries will be able to fly safely for much more time to come. Other upgrades to the firmware could potentially be made as well. We could post disassembly, repair and reassembly video tutorials on line to aid anyone needing to repair a broken aircraft or controller. Since Autel refuses to do this we have the right to take it on ourselves.
I would love to be able to fix my drone myself but I can't get parts...
 

rickhartmanii

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My Evo 1 has performed flawlessly so far, but I am so p-o-ed at Autel for discontinuing support already! It is absolutely ridiculous that you cannot continue to get batteries and spare props (either from Autel or from any third-party suppliers I am aware of) for a drone as relatively recent and capable as the Evo 1. Looking around, there is no problem getting supplies and equipment for DJI drones many years older than the Evo 1. Plus, there is a lot of third-party aftermarket equipment as well for DJI systems. And, for those who say I shouldn't complain because it's a few years old, I contend that, from a purely business sense, why the heck would I buy a new Autel Evo 2 when they will probably kill support for it in a few months or so whenever they come out with the Evo 3? People who buy $10,000 drones don't buy Evo's and most people who buy Evo's I'd wager do not want to shell out >$1000 to get a system you won't even be able to buy batteries for in a couple years!
It's not like I expected it to be supported for decades or anything, but I think being able to at least buy batteries and replacement props for more than three years is reasonable.
Needed to vent. Bye Bye Autel
p.s. I know DJI has the whole geofencing thing people go on about, but Autel has land-fencing. As in: you can't even take off without batteries and propellers! :mad:
p.p.s. Owning an Autel makes me feel like I'm on the Island of Misfit Toys! Which sucks, because I really like my Evo 1!!
I just bought a new battery and a 4 battery charger from Best Buy on eBay.Best Buy has an official presence on eBay and they are selling off their Evo Inventory. Some of the stores still have some stock too. The battery and the charger together cost me $100
 

YuKay

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Just had this email response from Autel about fixing my two batteries which report "damaged" when I load them up with all LEDs blazing:

"Unfortunately, our Autel EVO I has has already end [sic] its service (Phased out) a long time ago. At this time, the only solution would be for you to purchase refurbished batteries from our team here in North America and have them shipped to the UK.
It would be about £190 ($ 260 USD).
Our refurbished batteries are guaranteed to have 10 cycles or less on them at the time of purchase, so you would not see too much (if any) difference between a brand new battery and a refurbished one."
UPDATE: After further experimentation, I was able to bring my dead/damaged batteries back to life. What didn't work was holding the battery LED buttons down for 30secs and then leaving them on charge for 24hrs (two failed attempts). What DID work was holding the buttons down for 60secs and then leaving the batteries on charge for 3 days* (one attempt). I have just been out flying with both these batteries and they are as good as new. (I don't know if two days would have been enough because I forgot about them and didn't test at that time.)

It is worrying that Autel support didn't know that this extended routine might work - or more likely chose not to share this fix with me. Delighted as I am to get my batteries back, I am now even more disappointed with Autel than I was before - and that was barely possible.
 

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