Friday, 9 March 2012

The Foundation giveth, and the Foundation taketh away

Well, to be fair, it wasn't really them.  As you might've heard there's been a manufacturing mishap, delaying the delivery of the first batch:

From what I understand the RG45 jack (network port) that was meant to be used was swapped out for a different component, without magnetics - essentially this is what stops any possible current crossing over from the network cable itself and causing interference with the data coming.  Especially in the case of someone hooking up PoE (definitely not supported!).  There are a lot of technical details on the Raspberry Pi site that I won't go into here, but essentially what this means is that all 10,000 boards have to be shipped back, the wrong components manually removed and the new, correct components soldered on.  I'm quite glad I'm not a factory worker in China right now (more so than normal I should say) as that sounds desperately dull!!

From what I can gather from the forum everything has already been shipped back, the work  has started on replacing the component and if things go well they might be winging their way back to us as early as Monday.  I must say, despite this being a slightly disappointing delay, I'm impressed with the turnaround time. 

So what does this mean now?  Although the initial date I received of 12th March won't be met now, the first batch should still be shipped to the lucky few this month, although I'm sure the Foundation will be doing a thorough check before they let any of they go out.  As for the next batch, this is where we might see more delays, depending on how easy it will be to source a steady supply of the correct component.  Fingers crossed, I may just get my slice of Pi before the month's out!

So why has this occurred?  Why wasn't this caught earlier you might be asking?  It would seem than final pre-production boards were actually shipped to the Foundation before manufacturing of the first batch started, and those boards actually had the right component!  Everyone at the Foundation reviewed the boards, were happy with them and gave our friends to the East a big thumbs up.  And then someone decided to change the components....

So the score as I see it?  It's a bit disappointing, but well done to everyone for sorting it out - now let's get back to the waiting!

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