The FunKey Times
#9 (July 30, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that 300 FunKey S devices were being manufactured daily, meaning that they would soon be able to announce a shipment window for that production batch. They also said that while they had not yet come to a decision regarding the addition of Crystal Blue as a color option on their store page, the positive feedback of the community to the color's announcement was a motivation to do so.
#8 (July 2, 2021) - To celebrate the one year anniversary of the launch of their Kickstarter campaign, the FunKey Team announced the giveaway of three FunKey S devices styled in a new commemorative color, Crystal Blue. They also announced that if this color proved to be sufficiently popular, they would consider adding it as a fourth color option on their store page. Regarding device manufacturing and shipping, the FunKey Team said that the current batch of 600 devices would begin shipping out the subsequent week, while the next batch of 5,000 devices was still in the process of being manufactured, with their shipping window estimate set between late July and early August.
#7 (June 25, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that they had finally received their shipment of microprocessors, allowing the assembly of 5,000 units to proceed. They also announced the release of a new firmware update, with improved Sega Genesis add-on emulation and RetroFE custom theme support being among the listed improvements. To complement the newly-added custom theme support, two new default RetroFE themes were added to FunKey-OS: EmuStation and RetroDex.
#6 (June 4, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that 1,500 devices were in the process of being shipped out, primarily fulfilling March and early April orders. For subsequent orders, the FunKey Team said that they would be receiving their microprocessor shipment, which had been in short-supply, at the end of June. Once this occurs, devices are expected to be manufactured within a few weeks, with shipment currently slated for late-July or August. Also announced was an upcoming FunKey-OS update, about which more information is expected to be shared after the update's release later this month.
#5 (May 8, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced the transition from BackerKit to a new store platform, which, among its numerous benefits, allows users to receive discounted shipping on bulk orders. The FunKey Team also announced that shipment of the April batch of devices had begun, while manufacturing of the May batch had likewise begun.
#4 (April 24, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that while production of their April batch of devices was nearing completion, shipment of their May batch would likely be delayed into June due to a shortage of the processor, an irreplaceable component. They also announced the release of FunKey-OS 2.2.0, most notably bringing button remapping capabilities to the FunKey S.
#3 (April 9, 2021) - The FunKey Team mentioned that production of the April batch of devices was still ongoing, hampered by an ongoing shortage of electrical components. They said that while they were doing as much as they could to ship the devices on time, the possibility of a delayed shipment remained. They also said that all devices ordered prior to April 9th were in the April or May batches, while subsequent orders would be in the June batch.
#2 (March 19, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced the release of FunKey-OS 2.1.0, a firmware update that added aspect ratio saving and an on-device file explorer, among other improvements. They also announced that the shipment of second batch devices had begun, with shipment of third batch devices expected to occur in April.
#1 (March 5, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced the release of FunKey-OS 2.0.1, a minor firmware update that, most notably, removed the high pitched background noise of the FunKey S. They also mentioned that the production of the second batch of devices was ongoing and that shipment of these units would likely begin in April.
Episode 23 (February 12, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that all devices had been shipped out prior to the Chinese New Year and that all initial backers, whether they received a tracking number or not, would be receiving their devices in the coming days. They also announced that while the end of backer fulfillment meant that updates would no longer be as regular, they still intended to support the FunKey S with further manufacturing and software updates while they simultaneously brainstormed what their next project might be.
Episode 22 (February 5, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that device shipments were still ongoing and that they expected all units to be shipped out prior to the Chinese New Year. They also said that whether a package's tracking number is sent before or after shipment depends on the destination country.
Episode 21 (January 29, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that repairs of the remaining FunKey S units had been completed and that the devices were being prepared for shipment by the shipping company. They also said that they had created several additional tutorials since the previous update and intended to create more of them as time went on.
Episode 20 (January 22, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced the creation of a new documentation page on their website that would include documentation to facilitate the use of the FunKey S. They also announced the release of FunKey-OS 2.0, a updated version of the FunKey S firmware that added support for the Gmenu2x launcher and screenshots, among other improvements. They also said that it would take another week for FunKey S units to finish undergoing repair, after which they would be sent to the shipping facility.
Episode 19 (January 15, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that they had selected a batch of replacement U3 MicroSD cards for the remaining FunKey S units. While they were not ready to announce a new shipping date, they said that the devices would be shipped with an updated version of FunKey-OS that included Gmenu2x, among other software improvements. They mentioned that this software update would be released before the next weekly update, with current FunKey S owners being able to update to it via the MicroUSB port on their devices.
Episode 18 (January 8, 2021) - The FunKey Team announced that the manufacturer was nearly finished checking for and fixing defects in the remaining FunKey S units. They also announced that they would be upgrading the MicroSD cards used in the systems following several reports of early MicroSD card failure. Due to a number of factors they said that they could not yet confirm an updated shipping date, though expected it to be in either February or March.
Episode 17.5 (December 23, 2020) - Following the discovery of unexpected faults in four FunKey S units received by backers in Asia, the shipment process was halted after only 600 of the 3100 units had been shipped. The FunKey Team said that they were extremely disappointed by the added delay, stating that they were working with the manufacturer to check the remaining units for potential faults before any further units would be shipped out. They also said that they would repair any units that had arrived with faults at no additional cost to backers.
Episode 17 (December 18, 2020) - The shipment process began on schedule the day prior, December 17. The FunKey Team said what while some orders would arrive before Christmas, due to COVID-19 related delays there was a chance that backers in the European Union and United States would receive their systems afterwards. They also said that all backers would receive shipment tracking numbers when their devices are ready for shipment.
Episode 16 (December 11, 2020) - The FunKey Team announced that production had progressed smoothly since the previous week, with the start of device shipment still on track to begin in mid-December. They also announced that they would add in a future update to FunKey-OS the program launcher Gmenu2X as an alternative to the default RetroFE launcher. The FunKey Team said that the more open development environment of Gmenu2X would facilitate future third-party software development for the FunKey S. They announced that one of the first third-party software ports was the VBA-next emulator, which would provide better GBA emulation than the default gpSP emulator.
Episode 15 (December 4, 2020) - The FunKey Team announced that the final assembly of FunKey S units had begun, with several accompanying images illustrating the process. They state that they expect the shipment process to begin in mid-December. They also fulfilled their promise to make the FunKey S hardware open source by releasing schematics of the system's electrical components on GitHub.
Episode 14 (November 27, 2020) - Following the open source release of the Funkey-OS firmware the previous week, the FunKey Team began to fulfill their promise of making the FunKey S hardware open source as well by releasing 3D model schematics of the FunKey S shell pieces in STL and STEP formats, allowing users to view, modify, and 3D print the device's plastic components. The FunKey Team also announced that while the all components had finally been delivered for final assembly, the timeline for this would have to be pushed back by another week. This was due to the need to remove the Sega Genesis port of Cave Story from FunKey-OS to avoid potential legal risks posed by the recent DMCA notice sent by the publisher of the related game Cave Story+, Nicalis, to the developers of the original game's decompilation. Expressing their condolences for the delay, the FunKey Team said that they would make the most of the delay by updating the preloaded firmware to the most recent version and shared a seven minute gameplay video of the PlayStation game MediEvil on the FunKey S.
Episode 13 (November 20, 2020) - The FunKey Team announced that all FunKey S PCBAs had been manufactured, with testing underway to check for potential problems. The team also released all of the files needed to build the FunKey-OS Linux distribution on GitHub, fulfilling their promise to make the device's software open source. They additionally shared videos further demonstrating the "Instant Action" feature of the FunKey S, giving it the ability to save and reload save states upon closing and opening the system, respectively.
Episode 12 (November 13, 2020) - The FunKey Team announced that the FunKey S PCBAs were undergoing production, with automatic checks in place to ensure that each system functions properly. Once all of the PCBAs are made, they will be combined with the rest of the system components to produce the complete FunKey S units. The FunKey Team also announced that four themes would be included with the system out of the box: FunKey, Classic, Flat, and TFT. They also reiterated that users interested in customizing their devices further would be able to install additional themes made by themselves or others, with several such themes planned for inclusion in further firmware updates.
Episode 11 (November 6, 2020) - Following an adjustment of the length of the FunKey S battery's wire to make it fit more efficiently in the device's casing, the FunKey Team gave the go-ahead for the manufacturing of the devices to begin. This was illustrated with a timetable of the manufacturing and shipping processes that indicated that the manufacturing of the components would last until November 23rd, that those components would be assembled into finished units by December 3rd, and that the devices would be packaged, shipped, and delivered to backers before December 25th. The FunKey Team also shared further FunKey S gameplay videos and announced the homebrew games that would be preloaded onto the system by default.
Episode 10 (October 30, 2020) - After receiving the final shipment of sample production units from the manufacturer for inspection, the FunKey Team verified that the devices had no further issues and awaited the response of backers to give the go-ahead for mass production of the devices to begin. The FunKey Team shared several images of the final FunKey S units in their post, including images of the devices with their packaging and images of the Retro Grey system with colorful buttons installed.
Episode 9 (October 23, 2020) - Due to their dissatisfaction with the screen quality of the FunKey S sample unit that they received from the manufacturer, the FunKey Team decided to upgrade it to one that displays clearer and sharper images, a contrast they illustrated with a series of images. Because of this change, the manufacturing of the system had to be delayed until November 20th, when the new displays would become available again. Additionally, due to the completion of a compatible TurboGrafx-16 emulator, the team announced that the emulation of the system would be supported by the FunKey S out of the box. They also announced that since they would be receiving the final sample units of each FunKey S model in several days, they intend to share several images of the final system in the subsequent weekly update.
Episode 8 (October 16, 2020) - The FunKey Team shared more photos of GBA gameplay on the FunKey S in both 240x180 scaled and 240x240 stretched aspect ratios. They announced that they have chosen the battery that will be used in the FunKey S for mass-production, a custom 410 mAh lithium-ion battery that provides an average battery life of an hour and forty-five minutes. They also announced that the final mold for the casing is nearly finished, with only an issue with button height still needing to be fixed. Additionally, due to the FunKey S shipment date approaching, they closed backer surveys, with those who filled out their surveys being the first to receive their devices.
Episode 7 (October 9, 2020) - The FunKey Team shared the gameplay video that they previously posted on their Instagram page. They also announce that they have upgraded the casing and display glass of the FunKey S to make them more scratch-resistant.
Episode 6 (October 2, 2020) - The FunKey Team shared further FunKey S gameplay photos, with video of that gameplay being available on their Instagram page. Having ordered all of the necessary electrical components for the FunKey S, they also announced that the FunKey S manufacturer will soon begin assembling FunKey S PCBAs. In other news, the FunKey Team moved their order platform from Indiegogo OnDemand to their own store on BackerKit, where all new orders will be processed.
Episode 5 (September 25, 2020) - The FunKey Team finished designing the product packaging and received physical versions of it. Accompanying images of said packaging and the included measurements show that FunKey S units will come in 3.35 inch brown square boxes. Only 1.38 inches vertically, the box contains the FunKey S, securely held in the center of the box by a paper insert, and, presumedly below the paper insert, the included Micro-USB cable, additional buttons sets, and keychain lanyard. To differentiate the different color models of the FunKey S, each FunKey S box is also marked with a sticker indicating whether the unit is Original Purple, Retro Grey, or Atomic Purple.
Episode 4 (September 14, 2020) - The FunKey S manufacturer submitted images of a sample FunKey S shell and button set made using the completed mold to the FunKey Team. Accompanying images show the sample shell and buttons, which are black and white, respectively, with the lack of shell coloration being due to the purpose of the first sample: to test the quality of the plastic.
Episode 3 (August 28, 2020) - Within three days of the FunKey S color option surveys being released nearly three-quarters of backers submitted their choices, with Atomic Purple in the lead with 48% of the total orders, Retro Grey in second with 38%, and Original Purple in last place with 14%. In addition, the FunKey S manufacturer is nearly finished making the FunKey S molds.
Episode 2 (August 21, 2020) - The molds and PCBAs that will be used to make the FunKey S units are being created at the manufacturing facility, with several accompanying images visualizing the progress. Kirby's Dream Land for the Game Boy is shown running on the screen of one of the production units.
Episode 1 (August 18, 2020) - The FunKey Team submitted the finalized FunKey S mold to the factory in China where the devices will be manufactured. Workers at the factory will make a mold from the design, which, when complete, will be used to manufacture the FunKey S units. An accompanying video visualizes the mold as a digital 3D model. The FunKey Team is also working on finalizing the design of the packaging that FunKey S devices will be packaged and shipped in.
This section consists of a repository of links to news articles written about the FunKey S and its prototype predecessor, the Keymu. The list is split into three sections: stories written after the unveiling of the Keymu in June 2017, stories written after the unveiling of the improved FunKey S in April 2019, and stories written after the beginning of the FunKey S Kickstarter campaign in July 2020. Once the FunKey S is shipped, a fourth section will be created to list news articles reviewing or reporting on the final product. To highlight articles that review the FunKey S rather than simply report on announcements made about the product, the listings of such articles will be marked in bold.
If you are searching for articles to inform your decision on whether or not to purchase a FunKey S, note that articles prior to April 2019 describe the Keymu, the larger predecessor of the FunKey S, and thus do not take into account differences between the Keymu and FunKey S. In addition, all FunKey S units created prior to the manufacturing of the devices after the Kickstarter campaign were prototypes assembled with different displays and used 3D printed shells and buttons, and thus differ slightly from the final product.
- September 20, 2021 (SquallSnake) - FunKey S – Tiny Retro Handheld Gaming System Walkthrough
- June 28, 2021 (Yanko Design) - The world’s tiniest functioning Game Boy Advance SP is the size of a stack of post-its, and it’s transparent too!
- June 6, 2021 (TechBomb) - FunKey S Is a Keychain-Sized, Gameboy-Style Retro Gaming Console
- May 28, 2021 (Post Call Gaming) - The FunKey S – Tiny Fun on the Go
- May 14, 2021 (GAMINGbible) - This Super-Mini Game Boy-Like Will Also Play Your PS1 Games
- April 21, 2021 (Tuvie) - FunKey S – Tiny Foldable Handheld Console for Retrogames
- April 18, 2021 (Beebom) - FunKey S Is a Keychain-Sized, Gameboy-Style Retro Gaming Console
- April 14, 2021 (Toy Tales) - FunKey S from FunKey Project
- April 14, 2021 (Mr Gadget) - FunKey S: A Keychain-Sized Console With Tons Of Emulators
- April 9, 2021 (Gizmodo) - My Eyes Hate Me for Loving This Impossibly Tiny Game Boy Clone
- April 8, 2021 (Lenex Web) - FunKey S tiny foldable gameboy features an LCD color screen & built-in 0.5 W speaker
- April 5, 2021 (Trend Hunter) - The FunKey S Keychain Game Console Has a 1.5-Inch Display
- April 2, 2021 (Cool Things) - FunKey S Puts A Handheld Console With A Tiny 1.5-Inch Screen That Can Play PS1 Games On Your Keychain
- April 1, 2021 (Men's Gear) - The FunKey S is a Keychain-Size Console That Plays Retro Games
- March 27, 2021 (TechEBlog) - Nintendo 3DS Launched 10-Years-Ago, The FunKey S is a Much Smaller Game Console That Does More
- March 26, 2021 (Uncrate) - FunKey S Keychain Gaming Console
- March 25, 2021 (Input Mag) - The FunKey S is a Game Boy Advance that fits on a keychain
- March 23, 2021 (Vikendi) - This keychain is a miniature Game Boy Advance SP with emulators
- March 16, 2021 (GamingOnLinux) - FunKey S is a tiny Linux-powered retro-gaming handheld
- March 8, 2021 (GBATemp) - User Review: Funkey S (Hardware)
- February 13, 2021 (North Devon Retro Computing Archive) - FunKey S – Retro gaming on your key chain!
- November 19, 2020 (obscurehandhelds) - Smaller Is Better? A Swarm Of Tiny Handhelds Is Coming
- August 5, 2020 (DudeIWantThat) - FunKey S - World's Smallest Foldable Console
- August 3, 2020 (TechAcute) - FunKey S: Play Retro Games with the World’s Smallest Gaming Handheld Console
- July 28, 2020 (Game Rant) - Tiny Handheld Console Plays SNES, PlayStation Games, and More
- July 27, 2020 (Nintendo Enthusiast) - Size matters not: The FunKey S provides retro thrills in a microscopic format
- July 27, 2020 (Nintendo Life) - The FunKey S Is A Handheld Console That Fits On Your Keyring
- July 24, 2020 (NAOS Cluster) - Funkey S, the world's smallest foldable handheld console
- July 15, 2020 (NotebookCheck) - FunKey S: Miniature handheld console storms Kickstarter with over US$100,000 in funding
- July 14, 2020 (Geeky Gadgets) - FunKey S tiny foldable handheld console hits Kickstarter from €62
- July 13, 2020 (Liliputing) - FunKey S is a tiny retro console that looks like a Game Boy Advance SP
- July 9, 2020 (Ausretrogamer) - FunKey S – All Your Retro Games On A Keychain
- July 7, 2020 (Technabob) - The FunKey S Is the Smallest Handheld Gaming System We’ve Ever Seen
- July 6, 2020 (The Awesomer) - Funkey S Mini Gaming Handheld
- July 2, 2020 (hackster.io) - FunKey S Handheld Games Console Opens Crowdfunding, Aims to Put Open Emulation on Your Keyring
- May 18, 2020 (RetroDodo) - Funkey S Review – The Mini Gameboy Advance SP
- April 16, 2019 (Medium) - FunKey Is a Complete Handheld Game Console That Fits on Your Keychain
- April 16, 2019 (Hackaday) - The Pocket Emulator that Will Fit in Your Pocket
- July 15, 2017 (Gadgetsin) - DIY Keychain-sized Mini Game Console Runs NES, SNES and GBA Games
- July 10, 2017 (Wonderful Engineering) - Build This Key Chain Sized Game Boy & You Will Be a Millionaire
- July 9, 2017 (The Awesomer) - Keymu Keychain Retro Console
- July 7, 2017 (Gigazine) - Emulator that can play NES, Super Fami, Game Boy, GBA with world's smallest key holder size is amazing
- July 7, 2017 (Gadgetify) - Keymu: Open Source Keychain-Sized Game Boy
- July 7, 2017 (Throwbacks) - A Tiny Game Boy Exists And Seeing It Will Make You Want One
- July 6, 2017 (Inquirer.net) - WATCH: Game Boy emulator keychain built by YouTuber
- July 6, 2017 (Highsnobiety) - This Keychain-Sized Game Boy Is Every Gamer’s Dream
- July 6, 2017 (Gizmodo) - Someone Could Make a Killing Selling This Keychain-Sized Game Boy
- July 6, 2017 (Uproxx) - This Keychain-Sized Game Boy Color Needs To Be Nintendo’s Next Nostalgia Product
- July 6, 2017 (Spiria) - Keymu, the keyring console
- July 6, 2017 (VICE) - This Keychain-Sized Game Boy Emulator Is our 90s Dream Come True
- July 6, 2017 (hackster.io) - Keymu: An Emulation Console for Your Keychain
- July 6, 2017 (Hype Beast) - Watch This Fully Functional Keychain-Sized Game Boy in Action
- July 6, 2017 (Mashable) - Tiny keychain-sized Game Boy is infinitely better than the SNES Classic
- July 6, 2017 (Alphr) - Give Yourself Horrible Cramp With The DIY Game Boy Advance SP Keyring
- July 5, 2017 (Boing Boing) - You can build this world's tiniest Game Boy Color clone
- June 30, 2017 (Hackaday) - Hackaday Prize Entry: Gaming Done Tiny With Keymu