Nearly there, MWC and more
By now, we’re only missing a couple of hundred replies to the shipping survey’s we sent out and we’re nearly at the point where we will start shipping the Almond+. The question everyone wants us to answer is; when will the Almond+ ship? Well, we have some mixed news in today’s update about this, so let us explain where we’re at.
The good news is that we’ve resumed shipping the beta and developer units and by now, almost all beta units have been sent out to the $349 and $499 tier backers, with the developer units being shipped out early next week. The picture above is of the first batch of boards during our internal testing, assembly and packing. Note that all of these units are assembled and test by hand in our offices.
The bad news is that the current board layout failed the EMI tests which we have to pass to be able to ship in high volumes. On the positive side of this bad news, this is a comparatively minor issue that will require a slight board layout change near the USB 3.0 chipset and we believe that this is something we can solve relatively quickly. We have already tested a rough hack of the potential solution and the results are very promising. This does however mean that we won’t be able to ship the final production units as planned by the end of this month.
As for shipping date, it’s too early to commit to a specific date that we as the first day of when we without a doubt know that we can start shipping the final production units. This is simply due to the fact that we need to re-do the EMI test with our modified board design. Once we’ve passed that test, we’ll be announcing a firm shipping date. This is unfortunately one of those things that can happen when you have to meet stringent requirements for various certifications and although it wasn’t an issue we expected to have, it’s one that is comparatively easy for us to solve.
Everything else is progressing nicely and we’ll start posting more regular updates from this week on, although these updates will be shorter than we’ve done in the past, but instead they’ll show you how we’ve implemented a lot of the features in software and what you can expect once your Almond+ arrives. That said, we still have a lot of work to do on the software side and we’ll be issuing regular firmware and software updates for the Almond+ once we’ve shipped all of the units and much if the improvements and feature additions will be based on feedback from you, our backers.
Lastly, we’ve included a short video above from MWC in Barcelona that we attended a couple of weeks ago where we demoed among other things the Danalock from Poly-Control, as well as many of the sensors and devices that we showed at CES back in January. We had a few Kickstarter backers visiting us from Japan, Australia, UK and Sweden among other places at the show, so a big thanks to you guys for coming by.
The Almond+ Team