MWC, keypad changes, landscape support, planning en files
It has been a crazy week at MWC! We had a lot more to show for at the Jolla booth this year and people we really excited. Black slabs running Android are just not going to cut it anymore and especially the keyboard and all the customization's caught the eye of a lot of people.
Also, this was the first time the entire three-headed team was together! Good times!
Small review by PocketNow on all goodies:
With the current keypad there are currently two big issues: the backlight and the too hard keypress. These will both be fixed, because we are just (or even more) critical than you to deliver the best possible typing experience. The current benchmark you will probably have -the mighty N900- is a tough one to beat, but we are up to the challenge.
The backlight will be changed by moving around the LEDs. These are at some places where they can shine directly through some flex membrane piece and fail to illuminate the rest evenly. We are confident this will resolve the issue in the best possible way - given our resources. The next step would be to hire 30 engineers and set them in an office for a month and do refraction calculations. Which would be a problem, I would never be able to fit that many engineers in my living room.
The keypress was really noticeable at MWC. The hypotheses is that the pins under the keys (that press the dome) are slightly too short, meaning the flexible membrane around the keys has to be compressed as well before the pin reaches the dome. After some high-tech experimenting with paper-tape the conclusion was drawn the pins need to be 0.3mm longer. This seemed to be the sweetspot, any longer will make a way too soft press.
These are the only serious issues we have and the roadmap to fix them is already in place. No panic, all will be well, just like to share our progress and stuff we come across with you.
You might have heard about the future 2.0 version of SailfishOS? It was demoed at MWC and though it not yet ready for release, but it does have full landscape and reverse landscape support! Big thanks to Jolla for this behind-the-scenes support!
I'm sure it will take some time before it is all polished and ready to be released, but be sure to keep voting and posting at TJC, to make sure you/we/they don't lose sight of possible features that might be important.
The keyboard PCBs are ready to be ordered, these will arrive within three weeks probably. Then we can start putting all the components on, which will be a big job that may take two weeks with checking etc.
The change in the keypad will mean we have to do an extra iteration. Since we do not have an estimate from the factory how long everything will take, we do not know if/how much delay this will result in, but all other components will be ready waiting when they arrive.
All we can do keep you guys up to date, which we will!
There are some licencing issues to overcome before I can upload the Eagle files, but I finally have some time to get to this. So be sure to check the GitHub the following days as it will fill up with pics/files/schematics/info.
The 3D CAD files are -again- optimized for Shapways. These are not suitable for a regular 3D printer so have to be used as a guide to design your own. I don't even have a printer here anymore and the print files has to be optimized for the printer you have. I will however upload a basic file which is an excellent starting point to base it on.