Usually, this is the part of the review where we’d criticize Wooting because the software accompanying the One keyboard is not yet complete. After all, who ships a product with incomplete software? A team of three guys, that’s who.
It is fair to point out that it doesn’t matter how big your team is, if you’re shipping a product, it should be polished. In that sense, Wooting deserves some criticism, but we won’t judge them too harshly considering how ambitious this project has been; remember, the Wooting One is still the only fully analog, shipping keyboard in the world.
Further, we believe that Wooting decided not to wait any longer because it has Kickstarter backers who have been waiting and waiting for their keyboards. The company has missed a few deadlines at this point, and the problems with the manufacturing have been abated, so the decision to ship with not-quite-polished software was made.
One could also argue that part of the lack of polish is because Wooting has (arguably) tried to do too much with the One. There are tons of features on this keyboard, many of them completely new to users, and in the hubbub, some of the One’s great features are overshadowed. For example, if Wooting was lazy, it could have used the optical switches and analog technology to do nothing more than let you program the actuation point and then marketed that to death, and people would have been pleased.
As it is, the ability to adjust the actuation point is just a bullet point in a long list of features. Other small features like the Fn toggle, the ability to hot-swap the switches and top plates, and the super-simple lighting programmability are excellent, too.
You still can’t program macros, though (outside of the DKS quasi workaround), and there are no lighting effects you can employ on the One. Both of those are huge feature omissions, and it’s not clear when Wooting will get around to building them into Wootility.
You can get the One in one of two packages. The Basic package costs $160, and that’s the one most people will likely want, because the Premium package includes an entire set of replacement switches and costs $200. The price tag of $160 certainly puts the One in the higher end of cost for mechanical gaming keyboards, but considering all that it offers, that’s a solid deal. (Smaller-batch mechanical keyboards and DIY kits often cost even more.)
In any case, the Wooting One is an exciting keyboard that breaks through the sometimes agonizing sameness of the mechanical keyboard market. The Wooting guys deserve significant acclaim for completing such an ambitious projects, even with unpolished software; a hat tip goes to all of the company’s Kickstarter backers who shared this vision for the future of gaming on mechanical keyboards.
Update, 7/20/17, 10:20am PT: Updated information about the LED issue on the "Switches, Lighting & Key Caps" page.
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