Super short version:
- There was a problem with the LCDs. We fixed it. It took a bit of time, not least because our production prototype had to go on a 21,500 km round-trip from China to Canada and back.
- Our shipping date is more than a week, but probably less than a month away
- We will make an announcement about the shipping date as soon as we know for sure - hopefully later this week.
So, it's been a while since our last update. Since last time the following has happened:
It turned out that the LCD displays made by Fordata especially for the Triggertrap were different than the ones we were sent for testing with. Incredibly annoying - especially because we didn't find out until March 28th, when they finally delivered the screens (even though we had been promised we'd get them before mid-March). They have been on order since mid-December 2011. Let's just say that Fordata are well and truly off my Christmas list this year. Not that they celebrate Christmas in China, but that's by the by...
We decided to press on with the Fordata LCD displays even though we knew it was going to take a long time to get them delivered, because they are much better on energy consumption than the other displays we found. In retrospect, I'm not convinced that the extra battery life was worth the extra 4-month wait, but before we came to that conclusion, we had already paid them...
When we finally did get the displays, it turned out that they were showing up way too dark. To fix it, we had to get the factory to ship the prototype back to Canada, where Michael figured out what was going on, fixed the problem (we had to replace 3 of the resistors with ones that had different values), and then courier the prototype back to China. Meanwhile, this meant that we had ordered thousands and thousands of resistors with the wrong specifications. Hardly ideal.
Anyway, the new resistors were ordered, and I'm pleased to say that the factory is in full swing of creating the PCBs and soldering the SMT (Surface-Mounted Technology) into place. I asked them very nicely if they could send me some pictures so I could share them with you all, but apparently that's against their policy (a crying shame - but then again, I guess they have recent Foxconn news on their mind...)
So, the big question on everyone's mind is "when are we going to ship". I have had an estimate from the manufacturer now ("within the next few weeks"), but I've told them that an estimate isn't good enough: I want a date and a time - preferably down to the nearest second - for when the first truck rolls out of the factory, carrying Triggertraps to all our frankly incredibly patient customers.
I promise; cross my heart; As soon as I know the exact shipping date, I'll update you all on Kickstarter, right here, and via the mailing list. Hopefully, that announcement will come this week...
As soon as we have a shipping date, we're going to have to shut down the pre-orders; we need to prepare the shipping list for Seeed, we need to collect payment from all of the pre-ordered devices that haven't been paid yet, and we need a cut-off. So; the pre-order form is going to go offline at some point later this week. Once we've processed all the pre-orders, we'll sell the remaining Triggertrap V1s on a first-come first-served basis.