Chicago (IL) – Art Lebedev, the Russian design studio behind the Optimus OLED keyboard, said that it likely will not ship its first keyboards before December of this year.In the Optimus project blog, the company explained the new delay with an OLED manufacturer that is in serious financial trouble and therefore cannot deliver the OLEDs for the keyboard keys at all. Art Lebedev estimates that it will take three months to make OLEDs, once a new manufacturer is found. Meanwhile, the tooling process is scheduled to begin without the OLEDs and Art Lebedev may begin taking pre-orders now in April of this year, according to recent posts in the blog.
Of course, pre-ordering does not mean shipping and especially this part of the equation may not only be risky for Art Lebedev, but also for customers who are willing to pre-order a “Maximus Optimus” keyboard for $1490.
However, images of a prototype keyboard have appeared on Art Lebedev’s website, resembling more the initial idea of the keyboard rather then the proposal of a stripped down device with black/white keys. There will be 114 keys, each equipped with a 32x32 pixel color display that can dynamically change its appearance (see our image gallery for details.)