• Samsung Galaxy Nexus with Ice Cream Sandwich hands-on (video)

    The Galaxy Nexus (formerly referred to as the Nexus Prime) carries on the Nexus torch in spectacular fashion, and we've just spent a few quality moments with one here at the launch event. Design-wise, it's clear that the Nexus S DNA is here, though the rear reminds us most of the Galaxy S II. Those who abhor physical buttons will also be delighted, and while we'd gotten used to the whole Power + Home for a screenshot on the GSII, Power + Volume Down works just fine on this fellow.......

  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich now official, tons of enhancements

    PSHax member - Google has taken the stage in Hong Kong to make the next version of Android OS, nicknamed Ice Cream Sandwich, a thing of reality. Better known as Android 4.0, the update offers a massive redesign to the user interface and adds a plethora of new features. Some of the highlights include an NFC-enabled feature called Android Beam, offline search in Gmail, new lock screen features and a fancy unlocking method called "Face Unlock," which uses facial recognition to ensure strangers can't use your phone without permission. Ice Cream Sandwich also includes enhancements in.....

  • Motorola RAZR to get updated to Ice Cream Sandwich in early 2012

    Mutricy mentioned that while the company's new flagship device was designed for Gingerbread, plans have been set to introduce the latest version of Android in the start of 2012, with a more precise date naturally on its way. Given past experience, however, it's probable that the unbranded version of the device will get the refresh ahead of the Droid RAZR on Verizon, so US users may need to exercise a wee bit of patience here. Regardless, it's time for the competition to step up......

  • HTC Rezound render resoundingly revealed- wait next November 10th

    Hark! The first renders of the HTC Rezound have appeared online, thanks to some of the device's cases going up for pre-order. You can see that, like the Sensation XE, the phone has red-glowing soft keys -- a bit of a departure from HTC's traditionally conservative design language. If you recall, the phone formerly called Vigor is said to have a 4.3-inch screen, a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, 1GB RAM, Beats Audio and an 8MP rear camera.....

Previous Next

Pandora News - Production Status and some personal thoughts

Posted by Mohd Khairun Nasir Saadi On - - 0 comments

Evil Dragon has posted a rather long post about the production of the Pandora Console. "Wow, what a lot of work! Time really flies if you have a lot of work to do... in case you are wondering what we have been doing, well, here is some update."

1. Production at CircuitCo
CircuitCo (the company that produces the Pandora PCBs) has really improved during the last weeks! They hired a lot of new staff, bought new machines and outsourced some (easier) projects to be able to concentrate on special jobs like the Pandora production.

There now is a quality assurance and production manager for the Pandora project who communicates with us, and yes, we finally get answers to eMails, questions - communication has surely improved.
While he still needs some time to dive into this complicated project, he seems to handle everything quite good already.
We also have a schedule, we should have about 3300 finished boards early April... that should be almost all Batch 1 orders. Of course, we'll try to build them as fast as possible, though we surely continue to test every single board to be working. Better be safe than sorry!
After that, it's resurrection time!
One thing we also didn't know when we started all this is that such complicated boards can have quite a high failure rate in production - sometimes up to 10% (and that's 400 boards!)
Well, there are multiple steps to build these boards, 8 layers with a lot of very small parts soldered to it... if only one part is off by 0.1mm, it might lead to a non-working board, or a board with partial faults.
These boards go onto a bone pile and then it's time to try and fix them - or remove the expensive parts (like the SoC, the WiFi Module, etc.) so that they can be reused on a new board.
You never know how many will be unrecoverable, but we sure hope not too many. As Batch 2 is planned to happen shortly after Batch 1, it might be some of the late Batch 1 preorderers will get a Batch 2 unit.

We'll keep you informed!

2. Production in UK / Germany
While CircuitCo were busy building boards, we were busy as well. Not just with assembly, but also with organization (don't underestimate the amount of work needed to get Batch 2 started... it's A LOT more than I personally imagined!). Aditionally, boards that arrived here that were partly broken needed to be thoroughly tested and packed up with an explanation for CC about what's wrong with them. This also takes a lot of time - I personally needed two full days to check 30 boards (and was able to repair 10 of them myself, yay!). I think I'm now 4 weeks behind with replying to my eMails... there's so much work to do I really don't know where to start.

The LCD Cables have all been soldered now, however, quite a few of them were broken from the very beginning. With the ones that broke from the start and the few ones that still break now and then, we are about 300 cables short. No big deal, as the next 2000 are already in production - and yes, they are from a new company who did extensive testing, so no more purple haze issues!

The most annoying thing about the LCD Cables that were broken from the very beginning is though: We need to disassemble the cases again and replace the LCD cable with a new one... this takes about 10 minutes per unit, so 100 broken LCD cables mean additional two workdays!
That's where we really need to say THANKS to all of you who supported us with upgrading or buying the 7-Day-Pandoras! We really are swamped with work, and the additional money helps us a lot!
And sorry to those who can't afford it, but you can be sure we wouldn't do this if it wouldn't be necessary, those guys really help building YOUR unit as well!

3. Batch 2 progressing
As Batch 2 should start as quickly as possible after Batch 1 is finished, we are also organizing a lot of things right now.
The 4000 batteries for Batch 2 have already been produced and are currently sailing to UK. We already got cases for the first 800 units of Batch 2, which gives us a good start. Nevertheless, production for the remaining 3200 should start soon as well. Same goes for the LCD cables.
The next batch of Nubs has been ordered as well as the bare PCBs. The parts are either already lying at CC or are reserved at the distributor and ready to be delivered.

4. Production at other facilities?
As you know, there's been a lot of talk about moving to other facilities to speed up production or make it more reliable, etc. Well, that is, only if CC wouldn't work properly, but right now, they seem to be doing a good job.
They are able to produce about 800 PCBs per month right now, which is good enough for us, as we also need to build and test the units, which also takes time.

We contacted quite a few companies asking for quotatíons for Pandora PCB production. And it sure showed the Pandora is not your simple, common PCB.
The big companies either didn't want to start with orders lower than 10.000 or were booked by Apple (yep, Apple fully books multiple factories at the same time!). The smaller companies either had a long leadtime (up to 20 weeks before production would start), couldn't do it as it is way too complex or had unaffordable prices.

As CC wants to help us to optimize the board in the future to have less failures and a higher output and communication has improved a lot, we don't see any reason to move to another company right now anymore.
Never change a running system - especially if it is unsure that it will work better if you change it...

5. Things running through my head
Here's something you don't have to read if you're only interested in Pandora news, as these are some personal thoughts I had.
Quite a few might know me for a long time now: I'm always happy to help, trying to get things right (in honest ways) and I always try to please everyone. If there's anything I can do to help, I will.
When dealing with such a project however, it sure can take you down a lot. There were a lot of times where I was totally burnt out or scared of my future. If anything goes wrong, we owe you guys A LOT of money.
It would be my ruin, personally. I couldn't just stop thinking about how many trusted us and we couldn't deliver. Yes, I'm one of the guys who are not to good to handle risks emotionally. But thanks to you all, we're still here, we managed to survive.
However, I was still scared about all that... what if something goes wrong now? Having worked nearly all night and day on this project just to fail in the end and having debts of about 300.000 EUR... that really scared me a lot and made me feel uncomfortable.

Well, there was one more lesson I learnt during the last days: Whatever goes wrong now - it just money I would lose. Yes, a lot of money, but just money. I would still have food and a home to live in.
I guess everyone of you has seen the pictures and videos from Japan. A disaster. Terrible. It opened my eyes - I was being scared about a failure, where the worst case could be a lot of work with a lot of debts... but that's NOTHING compared to what all the poor people in Japan have suffered. It's absolutely nothing.
I wish I could help them, but unfortunately, there's not much I can do.
But the least I can do is write a few lines about it here... wishing them all the best. My thoughts are with the inhabitants of Japan, I hope the situation will improve soon. It's really hard to find the correct words for this situation, as everything that comes to my mind just sounds ridiculous compared to what's happening there. Words can't describe what the people are going through, and words can't ease their pain.
But I hope you are all with me when I say: Forget about the Pandora for a few minutes. Forget about any delays we had so far... give your thoughts to every single human who is suffering in Japan.
Pray for them... I will do so. The videos really showed me, how unimportant things like money, Pandoras or any other luxury items can be.
Thanks for reading.



Leave a Reply


GeostigmaShop Hot Items