I’m not exactly a frugal consumer, so I’m a bit more prone to dropping big bucks on a questionably-useful product than the next man. Even still, dropping $50 on a gaming mouse or some nice headphones is about as high as I’ll go for computer accessories, so I was a bit…shocked…to see this $1490 keyboard that’s in production. Granted, it’s a beautiful keyboard, and yeah, every individual key is a tiny 32×32 pixel OLED display, but the practicality of a keyboard that doubles the cost of your overall computing experience must be called into question.
I’d like something like this. Every key is programmable. Apparently it can be taught to start showing all programs that begin with “P” with a press of the “P” key, and I’m assuming it has more cool tricks than just that. There’d be a certain prestige associated with this kind of functionality, and I’d think it might even enhance productivity. Hey, it might not even be uncomfortable to type on. $100-$200 would seem a reasonable asking price though – certain not ten times that. I’m sure they’re not raking in profit on the thing; production costs must be high with all those little screens and its built-in memory (and probably some other features of which I’m unaware).
But where’s the market for this? High-tech firms that are just begging for…screens on their keys? I fail to see how this is meeting a need in the computing world. I’ve been sleeping well for years with my built-in and bundled keyboards, and if I had to upgrade then I’d probably go for the gaming-oriented Zboard…or blow $20 on 10 keyboards on Woot. (For the price of one Optimus keyboard, you could have 745 Kensington keyboards – if Woot allowed you to order 74.5 times.)