Print 25 comment(s) - last by Mr Perfect.. on May 20 at 8:05 PM

Optimus keyboards approach vaporware status

Although the Optimus OLED keyboard and Optimus mini three are interesting keyboard concepts, both products keep getting delayed.  The Optimus keyboard has a "Don't expect until late 2006" status on the Art Lebedev Studio web site.  The mini three keyboard that was supposed to be released on May 15 will not be shipped until at least August 15, 2006.  The mini three costs $121 and will feature a 6-bit, 96x96 pixel OLED display on each key, which is capable of displaying 5 frames per second.

The price and ship date of the full-size Optimus OLED keyboard is unknown.  The studio had previously announced a full 104 key OLED keyboard back in January, but has since made several promises and defaulted on the actual ship date.  The studio later announced that a keyboard would be available in Feburary 1st, 2006, but when February 1st finally rolled around, the studio instead announced the three-key mini-keyboard that was once again delayed today. 

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By Mudvillager on 5/19/2006 2:29:10 PM , Rating: 2
will be fun to see the final street price of the real keyboard - if it ever gets released that is...

RE: price
By das mod on 5/19/2006 3:23:12 PM , Rating: 2
do the math, ...
if the mini three costs $121
that leaves $40.4 per key (rounded to the nearest cent)
so 104 keys x $40.4 = $4195 usd
im guessing the delay has to do with production materials cost

RE: price
By peldor on 5/19/2006 4:34:46 PM , Rating: 3
A bargain at twice the price!

RE: price
By BillyBatson on 5/19/2006 6:39:21 PM , Rating: 2
lol yeah it will not cost that much, keep in mind the mini 3 has 3 large OLED keys, they are not standard keybaord sized keys

RE: price
By PrinceGaz on 5/19/2006 7:37:28 PM , Rating: 2
I imagine each standard-size key has a 32x32 colour display, maybe 48x48 at most. This is always going to be an expensive luxury. Having a customised keyboard is no doubt very nice, but paying several hundred dollars for it, and there being serious questions over it's long-term durability (once you start hitting those keys) makes it a foolish purchase at present.

RE: price
By Omatsei on 5/20/2006 1:02:12 PM , Rating: 2
On their website it says "It will cost less than a good mobile phone." To me, that means roughly $300 or so. And yes, I do believe it's worth it. As a gamer, imagine not having to look at a help screen to figure out where the jump button is... just look at the keyboard and see the key that says "Jump". Or, as a programmer, imagine adding some macros for some bit of code that you have to add a lot... program the keyboard so it changes the key labels when the Ctrl key is pressed, and you'll never forget which keys do what. I can see all kinds of uses for this, and I can't wait to get one.

RE: price
By Tiak on 5/20/2006 6:39:09 PM , Rating: 2
Now to do the math considering Optimus keys don't need that great of detail, and that these media keys aren't normally sized...

96x96 keys=9216 pixels
24x24 keys (my guess)=576 pixels

9216*3=27648 pixels total
576*104=59904 pixels

59904/27648= 2.166

2.166*121= $262.17 A more realistic price... Of course then throw in the price of managing all those keys and it'll be a bit more expensive...

Of course, since my resolution per key is just a shot in the dark, here are some other versions of the same calculation:
16x16 keys= $116.52
32x32 keys= $466.07
48x48 keys= $1048.67

Of course, even just based on the OLED all of these figures are inaccurate, considering the larger the particular section of OLED, the more it costs to make, it isn't simply by-pixel (the reason OLED TVs aren't thriving yet)... And once again the cost of other electronics the full keyboard would need drive it up... But I was just bored :P

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