Key Tronic Corporation (branded Keytronic) is a technology company founded in 1969 by Lewis G. Zirkle.[2][3] Its core products initially included keyboards, mice and other input devices. KeyTronic currently specializes in PCBA and full product assembly. The company is among the ten largest contract manufacturers providing electronic manufacturing services in the US.[4] The company offers full product design or assembly of a wide variety of household goods and electronic products such as keyboards, printed circuit board assembly, plastic molding, thermometers, toilet bowl cleaners, satellite tracking systems, etc.

Key Tronic Corporation
Company typePublic
IndustryComputer peripherals
Founded1969; 55 years ago (1969)
HeadquartersSpokane Valley, Washington, U.S.
Key people
Craig Gates (CEO)
RevenueIncrease US$588 million (2023)
Number of employees
5,447 (2023)
Footnotes / references

Keyboards edit

After the introduction of the IBM PC, Keytronic began manufacturing keyboards compatible with those computer system units.[5]

Most of their keyboards are based on the 8048 microcontroller to communicate to the computer. Their early keyboards used an Intel 8048 MCU. However, as the company evolved, they began to use their own 8048-based and 83C51KB-based MCUs.

Compaq Portable keyboard assembly manufactured by Key Tronic in 1984
Top and bottom of two Key Tronic foam-and-foil pads from the same assembly, showing conductive top layer and Mylar bottom layer with sponge foam in between. The foam is undergoing significant deterioration due to age; newly manufactured replacements are still being produced by TexElec.[6]

In 1978, Keytronic Corporation introduced keyboards with capacitive-based switches, one of the first keyboard technologies to not use self-contained switches.[citation needed] There was simply a sponge pad with a conductive-coated Mylar plastic sheet on the switch plunger, and two half-moon trace patterns on the printed circuit board below. As the key was depressed, the capacitance between the plunger pad and the patterns on the PCB below changed, which was detected by integrated circuits (IC). These keyboards were claimed to have the same reliability as the other "solid-state switch" keyboards such as inductive and Hall-Effect, but competitive with direct-contact keyboards.

ErgoForce edit

Among modern keyboard enthusiasts, Keytronic is known mostly for its "ErgoForce" technology,[7] where different keys have rubber domes with different stiffness. The alphabetic keys intended to be struck with the little finger need only 35 grams of force to actuate, while other alphabetic keys need 45 grams. Other keys can be as stiff as 80 grams.[8]

Corporate information edit

The company, which has been described as a contract manufacturer, was founded in 1969,[3] went public in 1983,[9] and has an estimated 5,000 employees.[10]

During 2016-2017, statements and press releases about Cemtrex's proposed acquisition of Keytronic have been released.[11]

References edit

  1. ^ "2023 Annual Report (Form 10-K)". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. September 26, 2023.
  2. ^ Grant, Tina, ed. (1996). International Directory of Company Histories. Vol. 14. United States of America: St. James Press. pp. 284–286. ISBN 1-55862-342-6.
  3. ^ a b "Keytronic Corporation: Private Company Information".
  4. ^ Lind, Treva (May 10, 2012). "Key Tronic's sales, earnings grab notice of investors". Spokane Journal of Business. Retrieved July 24, 2020.
  5. ^ Sandler, Corey (January 1983). "Key Tronic's Soft Touch". PC Magazine: 347. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  6. ^ "105 "Foam and Foil" Capacitive Pads for KeyTronic & BTC Keyboard Repair". TexElec. Retrieved September 9, 2021.
  7. ^ "Key Tronic Corporation Announces Distribution Agreement with NetZero, Inc". Bloomberg. Spokane, WA. Business Wire. 2000-10-27. Retrieved 2022-06-19.
  8. ^ Lasky, Michael S. (1999-07-01). Fox, Steve (ed.). "May the ErgoForce Be With You" (PDF). PC World. Vol. 17, no. 7. p. 88. Retrieved 2022-06-19.
  9. ^ Young, Larry (April 27, 1983). "Keytronic will go public". Spokane Chronicle. p. C6.
  10. ^ "Keytronic company profile - Office locations, jobs, key people".
  11. ^ Inc, Cemtrex (2017-09-05). "Cemtrex Announces Exchange Offer to Acquire Keytronic Corp". GlobeNewswire News Room. Retrieved 2020-04-10. {{cite web}}: |last= has generic name (help)

External links edit