Yesterday evening, Leap Motion's Michael Buckwald sent an email to all pre-order customers to tell them about the delay of the Leap's ship date to the 22nd of July. The reason behind this is they want the product to live up to its expectations.
Technically, they could've just sent all the pre-orders on May 15 as planned, since 600,000 devices have already been manufactured, but that wouldn't leave time for comprehensive testing.
Ultimately, the only way we felt 100% confident we could deliver a truly magical product that would do justice to this new form of interaction, was to push the date so we would have more time for a larger, more diverse beta test.
The testing process will focus more on practical things, like interaction with the operation system. The 12,000 developers already enrolled in the program will do the testing: they'll receive the final product in their inbox in the first week of June.
Leap Motion also guarantees this will be the only push back of the release date.
This will be the first and only delay... we're 100% confident that there will be a product that we're proud of and that will delight and amaze our customers.
Some people are already saying the Leap is vaporware. Since I know someone that was accepted in the developer program, I can tell you it's not ;-) By the way, you can count on me to publish a test of the Leap sometime in June.
Concerning the SDK, it will be launched soon, as planned.
Here's the email that was sent to pre-order customers:
Thanks for taking the time to read about the latest developments at Leap Motion. Over the coming weeks, our team will be keeping in touch with you, so you're always in the loop. Today, I wanted to reach out to you personally, and update you on the status of our ship date. After a lot of consideration, we've decided to push back the date and will now be shipping units to pre-order customers on July 22nd.
This is not a decision we take lightly. There are hundreds of thousands of people in over 150 countries who have pre-ordered Leap Motion Controllers, some as long as a year ago. These people are part of our community and there is nothing more important to us than getting them devices as quickly as possible.
We've made a lot of progress. When we first started taking orders back in May we were twelve (very tired) people in a basement. Now we are eighty (although still tired and possibly still in a basement). We've manufactured over six hundred thousand devices and delivered twelve thousand to amazing developers who are building applications that let people do things that just wouldn't have been possible before. We've used feedback from the community to make huge improvements to the stability and polish of the product. We're really proud of Leap Motion as both a company and a product.
The reality is we very likely could have hit the original ship date. But it wouldn't have left time for comprehensive testing. This will come in the form of a beta test that will start in June. This test will include developers who have been part of our early program and have access to a Leap device. Ultimately, the only way we felt 100% confident we could deliver a truly magical product that would do justice to this new form of interaction, was to push the date so we would have more time for a larger, more diverse beta test.
As an applicant to the Leap Motion Developer Program, this will not affect your early access to the Developer Portal and SDK in any way. You will still have the chance to create incredible applications before our launch.
I really appreciate your patience. I know it's been a long wait. Everyone that works at Leap Motion is working tirelessly to make sure that wait is worth it. Thanks so much for your help and support.
David and I will be participating in an open video Q&A tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. Pacific time. We'll post more information shortly on our Google+ page. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact our support team at [email protected] or my personal email ([email protected]).